WOBURN - The city's second COVID-19 wave continues to dissipate at a promising rate as the percentage of citizens testing positive for the viral infection dropped to the lowest level since early November, according to recent state reports.
For the second consecutive week, Woburn clung onto its coveted status as a COVID "yellow" community, a classification from the Mass. Department of Public Health (DPH) that defines the risk of contracting the novel coronavirus in the city as moderate.
According to DPH's latest community-level outbreak report, which covers the 14-day period between Jan. 17 and Jan. 30, Woburn's average 14-day case incidence rate, a value that contrasts active COVID-19 infections to total population size, dropped for the fourth consecutive week from a 49 on Feb. 5 to 33.5 last Thursday.
The city's case positivity rate also sank from from 4.91 to 3.62 percent. The percentage of locals testing positive for the virus hovers well below the key five percent threshold that has been described by the federal Centers of Disease Control (CDC) as indicative of problematic infection level.
Woburn's average 14-day incidence rate also remains the lowest since Nov. 11. At the time that early November DPH report was released, the community was in the midst of seeing an explosion of new COVID-19 cases that would result in the city's classification as a high-risk "red" community for 11 straight weeks.
That surge peaked in Woburn on Jan. 14, when the city's average 14-day case incidence rate hit 91.9. A week prior, Woburn's case positivity rate hit a crescendo with nearly 10 percent of all citizens seeking out testing finding out they had contracted the viral infection.
Based on the DPH release, public health authorities tracked at least 81 new cases during the later half of the two-week reporting period. As of last Thursday, at least 195 residents were confirmed to be recovering from what are believed to be active or infective COVID-19 cases.
Citizens who have the potential to pass on COVID-19 to others are subject to home isolation orders monitored by the local Board of Health. The mandatory directives require residents to stay away from the general public for at least 8-to-14 days, while close contacts of those individuals are also instructed to quarantine for a similar period of time to be sure they haven't contracted the virus.
Besides the two-week tally of active cases, another 33 residents had tested positive for the SARS-Cov-2 virus that causes COVID-19 but are not considered infectious.
Key COVID-19 transmission indicators tracked by DPH had been declining substantially in Woburn since the turn of 2021, a phenomenon that has mirrored statewide trends.
In a separate daily DPH report tracking statewide novel coronavirus trends, authorities revealed that every significant metric tracking the second surge has improved dramatically.
For example, the seven-day average of new statewide cases has decreased from a high-point of more than 6,200 cases on Jan. 8 to 1,578 on Feb. 14. The same seven-day average for COVID-19 related hospitalizations has nearly been cut in-half during the same time frame.
Meanwhile the state's case positivity rate, which on Jan. 2 hovered just below nine percent, has since plummeted to 2.19 percent as of DPH's daily report issued last night.