Downtown, Fenway Remain Low in COVID-19 Cases Even With Expanded Testing

Aside from the anomaly of homeless residents being tested in the South End at the shelters, the downtown neighborhoods continue to report some of the lowest numbers of COVID-19 cases in the area.

The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) put out its weekly neighborhood COVID-19 data on Friday, with statistics valid as of April 30 at 2:30 p.m. In those statistics, the downtown neighborhoods continued to show low rates of infection. Fenway had the lowest rate of infection in the city at 32.2 per 10,000 (176 cases) and Downtown/Back Bay/Beacon Hill had the second lowest with 53.7 per 10,000 (299 cases). That put those neighborhoods as some of the least affected areas in the city.

The South End logged a rate of 186 per 10,000 and 665 cases. That, of course, is buoyed by the priority testing of many homeless residents in the City shelters and at Pine Street Inn and Boston Medical Center. Those tests are assigned a South End zip code and are reported in the South End numbers.

Those low numbers have come even with a good amount of testing being done in the neighborhoods.

The Downtown/Back Bay/Beacon Hill area had 1,810 tests performed, and a low positive rate of 16.2 percent. Fenway had 889 tests done and a positive rate of 17.2 percent. Both of those were very low and far below the citywide average positive rate of 32.1 percent.

The South End showed 2,124 tests performed and a positive rate of 29.5 percent, still well below the city average despite containing results of such a vulnerable population.

East Boston had the highest positive rate in the city.

There had been 2,065 tests performed in Eastie, and 45.5 percent were positive. Parts of Dorchester (west side) and Mattapan also tested above 40 percent positive.

•In other news from the data released on Friday, there still is a skyrocketing infection rate for older adults citywide in Boston. For those over 80, the rate is now 495.7 per 10,000. That’s much higher than even those 70-79, who logged a rate of 270.8 per 10,000.

The infections rates were all more than 200 per 10,000 for those in Boston age 50 and older.

More than one in three COVID-19 cases were in persons age 60 and above.

Meanwhile, the rates for younger people are very low still, at 20.1 per 10,000 for age 0-19, and 80.1 per 10,000 for those 20-29. The most cases by number come from those age 50-59, who account for 17.4 percent of all cases.

Gender-wise, there are actually more women than men with the virus, some 49.6 percent being women and 47.2 percent being men. However, the infection rate for men is slightly higher than for women.

The racial statistics still show many more Black/African American residents who have the virus than any other racial group, accounting for 29.3 percent of infections. Whites accounted for 20 percent, and Latino residents accounted for 14.1 percent, with Asians logging 2.3 percent of cases.

Racial data is incomplete though, with 26.6 percent of cases having no racial information available.

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