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Boston Public Health Commission Urging Residents To Take Precautions After Rise In COVID Numbers

BOSTON (CBS) – The Boston Public Health Commission is urging people to get tested and vaccinated after the COVID-19 positivity rate in the city went up by 65% in the last two weeks.

"What we like to do is to stop something before it happens," the commission's executive director Dr. Bisola Ojikutu said. "We don't want this to end up in a situation where there's onward transmission to more vulnerable populations and we have increased hospitalization, and our hospitals are strained."

Boston's COVID testing site in Roxbury was practically empty on Thursday afternoon. It's a trend Whittier Street Health Center president Frederica Williams said is happening across the city.

"PCR testing numbers have gone down. People are doing rapid testing at home, but they're not getting vaccinated," she said.

Morticia Franklin reluctantly got her third dose of the Pfizer vaccine, but says she's not overly concerned about getting infected.

"I didn't really want to be boosted," said Franklin. "It was more of a job requirement, but hopefully it will be an extra layer of protection."

Since the statewide positivity rate is dropping along with COVID hospitalizations, the commission stopped short of calling for the citywide mask mandate to be reinstated. They are urging people to be cautious.

"Overall, our hospitals are not under the strain... at least not so far," Dr. Ojikutu told WBZ-TV. "We want to make some strong recommendations, so we don't get there."

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