Nearly 2,000 in state reported hospitalized with COVID-19
BOSTON (AP) — Nearly 2,000 people in Massachusetts were reported hospitalized Monday because of confirmed cases of COVID-19, with more than 400 in intensive care units.
The average age of those hospitalized was 67.
The number of newly confirmed coronavirus deaths rose by 41 on Monday while the number of newly confirmed cases of COVID-19 increased by more than 3,700.
The new deaths pushed the state’s confirmed COVID-19 death toll to 11,506 and its confirmed caseload since the start of the pandemic to more than 314,800.
The true number of cases is likely higher because studies suggest some people can be infected and not feel sick.
The number of probable or confirmed COVID-19 deaths reported in long-term care facilities rose to 7,151.
SMALL BUSINESS GRANTS
Nearly $49 million in grants will be awarded to businesses through the state’s COVID-19 small business grant program, Gov. Charlie Baker said Monday.
The program is part of a wider effort by the state to try to get people back to work, support small businesses, foster innovation, revitalize downtowns, and ensure housing stability during the pandemic.
Of the businesses being notified of their successful applications, Baker said, each meets a preferred criteria of being owned by women, minorities, veterans, individuals with disabilities, or those who identify as LGBTQ.
Also, every completed application received from a qualified minority-owned business that has not been able to receive prior aid from federal, state or local programs established to support businesses during the pandemic will be receiving relief, Baker said.
The Small Business Grant Program received over 10,000 applications seeking funds totaling over $500 million, one indication of the toll the pandemic has taken on local businesses.
More than 1,150 small businesses have been designated for a grant.
Baker also urged residents to stay within their immediate household during the Christmas holiday and resist the urge to visit family and friends, which could result in an additional spread of the coronavirus.
Massachusetts “simply can’t afford to have another spike,” Baker said at a press conference.