Mar 27, 2020

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker Press Conference Transcript March 27

Massachusetts Governor COVID-19 Update
RevBlogTranscriptsPress Conference TranscriptsMassachusetts Governor Charlie Baker Press Conference Transcript March 27

Massachusetts governor Charlie Baker provided a press briefing on March 27 for COVID-19 in the state. He broke with President Trump by saying “We’re not going to be up and running by Easter.” Read the transcript here.

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Charlie Baker: (00:00)
…Recently advised anyone leaving the New York area or has traveled through New York city to immediately self isolate for 14 days. Here in Massachusetts, we’re doing everything we can to keep people at home and prevent the spread. And starting today all travelers arriving to the Commonwealth are instructed to self quarantine for 14 days. To help deliver this message, travelers entering Massachusetts will be given information flyers instructing them of the 14 day quarantine at our major transportation hubs, including Logan airport, South station, and Worcester airport. Drivers will also see these flyers in rest stops on the turnpike and on roadside message boards that will display the message instructing travelers to quarantine. We’re taking extraordinary steps here to keep our residents safe, including asking folks to stay home and closing non-essential businesses, every which decision comes with a certain amount of pain, frustration and disruption for the people of the Commonwealth.

Charlie Baker: (01:05)
At the same time, we’re asking so much of our residents, we should also be thinking about the potential impact of travelers visiting Massachusetts from other places. As I said, we’re instructing all visitors arriving in Massachusetts to comply with this request for the sake of protecting the most vulnerable among us all, our parents, grandparents, and those who have underlying health conditions. Further, we’re asking that folks considering traveling to Massachusetts for whatever reason, do not travel to our communities, especially if you have symptoms. Healthcare workers, public health workers, public safety workers, and transportation workers are obviously exempt from this requirement. I know I mentioned the New York City area earlier when discussing the need for travelers to self quarantine, but I want to make clear governors Cuomo in New York, Murphy in New Jersey and Lamont and Connecticut are also doing everything they can to slow the spread of the virus.

Charlie Baker: (02:05)
Mayors, public health officials, doctors, nurses, and armies of frontline medical workers everywhere are doing extraordinary work, and they all have said the same thing. Stay home, stop the spread. Before I introduce a rather exciting announcement, I want to take a minute to reiterate the importance of telemedicine as we deal with this outbreak. Our administration has made telehealth available to everyone to help you talk to your doctors and other clinicians and to get medical attention without leaving your house. With a phone call or a video chat, if someone’s showing symptoms of COVID-19 they can talk to a provider and not be in close contact with their doctor or the hospital staff. This is extraordinarily important in our fight against COVID-19. Telehealth not only keeps patients safe but keeps providers safe too. We ordered telemedicine to be fully covered by health insurance for all services, and I urge everybody to take full advantage of it and not go in person to a medical facility if you have the alternative of a phone call or a video chat.

Charlie Baker: (03:15)
Along these lines, today we’re launching a new partnership to make available an online resource for residents to receive medical guidance from the safety of their home. Buoy Health’s online health assistance tool. The online tool is available at buoy.com/mass to provide medical advice remotely. I want to make clear it is not to be used in place of emergency medical care. Instead, it’s a tool that’s been collecting data and providing guidance to people for many, many months and everyone can use it to get much more information about their health, which as we know everyone is thinking about these days. Buoy Health’s tool is free for Massachusetts residents. First, users will be asked a series of questions to complete a risk assessment interview. When a user screens positive for COVID-19 symptoms or risk factors, they’ll be directed to the most appropriate resources based on their answers.

Charlie Baker: (04:20)
If a user indicates they’re experiencing symptoms or risk factors that are closely associated with those in COVID-19, they’ll be directed to other resources. Those resources include a portal linked up with their health insurance provider to talk over the phone or through video chat with a healthcare provider right away. Again, this is not to be used in the place of emergency medical care. Instead, it’s a tool everyone can use to get more information about their health and get connected quickly to the people they need to talk to to get the best guidance and advice about what to do next. We know there’s an avalanche of information out there, some of which is great, some of which is good, and some of them which is neither, and it’s our hope that this partnership will answer some of the questions we are all asking ourselves in some cases every day. Buoy Health’s online health tool offers a 24/7 front door for residents to offer their symptoms and get guidance on next steps.

Charlie Baker: (05:20)
We have with us today Dr. Andrew Le, who will go into more details on this in just a few minutes. He’s the CEO and cofounder of Buoy Health, which by the way is also a Massachusetts based company. Our administration has taken several steps to cut red tape and create avenues for our healthcare facilities to assign more doctors, nurses, and PA’s physician assistants to the fight against COVID-19. So far we’ve made it simple for our medical professionals to work at different hospitals in different specialties. We’ve made it possible bring more manpower over state lines into Massachusetts and to bring back doctors and nurses in good standing that may have retired. Today we’re working to bring more qualified professionals to the front lines as we fight COVID-19. The board of registration of medicine is giving medical school graduates who match a specific criteria an emergency 90 day limited license to practice medicine to help in the fight against COVID-19. This will be granted for an intern, resident or fellow at a Massachusetts healthcare facility or training program that’s been approved by the board. To qualify for this license, residents can fill out an application which will be submitted by the program or facility. If approved, the resident will get a license to be able to start supporting our healthcare institutions. And I want to thank Secretary Sudders, and DPH commissioner Monica Bharel for their work to get this up and running.

Charlie Baker: (06:48)
I think we all know that the COVID-19 outbreak has caused a lot of uncertainty for workers and businesses, especially here in the Commonwealth and across the country and we anticipate that there will be many taxpayers who struggle to meet their tax filing and payment obligations in light of the economic impact of the virus. Last week, the federal government announced that they were extending the federal tax filing and payment deadline to July 15. Over the past several days, we’ve worked closely with our colleagues in the legislature to develop a plan to align the state income tax deadline with the federal deadline. In partnership with House Speaker Bob De Leo and Senate President Karen Spilka, we’re filing legislation today to extend the 2019 state individual tax filing and payment deadline from April 15th to July 15th. The income tax relief would be automatic and taxpayers would not need to file any additional forms to qualify. The state extension would provide flexibility to tax payers and would afford them additional time to file their returns in a way that protects the Commonwealth strong fiscal footing. This change will provide the Commonwealth tax payers with significant relief at this very uncertain time and I’m very thankful to the efforts of ANF secretary Mike Heffernan and house and Senate leaders who worked together to come to this agreement and we look forward to working with the legislature to get this bill enacted.

Charlie Baker: (08:19)
Once again on behalf of Lieutenant Governor, Karyn Polito and myself and our entire administration, I want to thank those of you who are staying at home in order to help us stop the spread of the virus. I know there’s been a lot of change, a ton of uncertainty, and a lot to adapt to. And these are clearly difficult times and times in which disruption is becoming more the norm, that the people in Massachusetts have overcome trying times in the past and I’m confident that we will again together. I urge everyone to subscribe to the Commonwealth’s text alert system by texting COVIDMA to 888-777 and continue to get your news from trusted sources like local news, newspapers and official channels like mass.gov/covid19. At this point I’d like to turn it over to Dr. Le and let him talk a little bit about Buoy’s technology and capability to assist Massachusetts residents.

Dr. Le: (09:24)
Thank you so much governor Baker. It’s an honor to be here with all of you. As a local business here in Boston, our team is eager to help residents in our home state during this crisis. Buoy was founded 7 years ago in Harvard’s innovation lab to help people figure out what to do when they’re sick or injured using modern technologies and artificial intelligence. We felt there had to be something better than searching randomly on the internet for help, being scared and alone. That mission has never been more relevant than it is today. Now we’re here to help the Department of Public Health give personalized information and guidance to residents about what to do if they’re experiencing symptoms related to the Coronavirus, whether that’s self isolation or how to get care and testing. Buoy’s self diagnostic tool uses the latest Department of Public Health and CDC guidelines to help residents understand the risk related to the disease and what to do next. You can find our tool online at buoy.com/mass. That’s B-U-O-Y.com/M-A-S-S. Our goal is to empower people to make good decisions about their health during this vital time. Thank you.

Speaker 1: (10:42)
I was about to say good afternoon, but I guess it’s still morning. Good morning. First we would like to acknowledge and send our deepest sympathies to the families and friends that experienced pain and suffering through this crisis. Yesterday, as you know, we reported 10 deaths for a total of 25 lost during this public health pandemic.

Secretary Sardis: (11:02)
For a total of 25 lost during this public health pandemic. It’s extraordinarily important for us to continue to adhere to social distancing and the basic public health prevention hygiene measures we have talked about all along. These strategies will have an impact in blunting the spread of the illness. We’re not going to see the impact immediately, but we know that the strategies will have an impact. They can’t protect us from difficult days like yesterday, but they will benefit our Commonwealth and the people in the weeks and months ahead. So a couple of additional updates.

Secretary Sardis: (11:39)
The COVID-19 public health emergency has put a tremendous demand, as you know, on our healthcare system and access to healthcare workers. In order to respond to this extraordinary demand, a public health order was issued providing advanced practice registered nurses, otherwise known as APRNs, of which we have 13,642 of them in the Commonwealth in good standing with greater flexibility in their prescribing practices. Specifically, the order allows the certified nurses to continue to prescribe as they’ve already authorized to do. It authorizes APRNs who have at least two years of supervised practice, experience to prescribed without physician oversight, and authorizes APRNs with fewer than two hours of supervised practice experience to prescribe with physician oversight, but without the normally required written guidelines. These are nurses such as nurse clinical anesthesiologists, midwives, and advanced practice registered nurses. As some of you know, if you stay current with all that we’ve been doing, we filed a waiver with the federal government last Friday, I believe, and recently received approval of some of the things that we’ve requested. So we applied for a federal waiver to fast track Mass health enrollment, streamline administrative requirements for providers, and deliver critically needed healthcare services during the COVID-19 pandemic. The CMS quickly turned around part of our 1135 waiver and they’re still reviewing some of our other asks. Some of the items approved including enrolling out of state providers and easing other provider requirements when they enroll in Mass health. It allows providers to be reimbursed for care in alternative unlicensed settings such as congregate care settings and if we set up tents and other large programs, and suspends prior authorization requirements and extends preexisting prior authorizations throughout the emergency. Again, the idea is to relieve administrative requirements in order for us to move quickly and we expect to hear additional approvals by the end of today and Monday.

Secretary Sardis: (13:58)
Volunteers. As the governor sort of previewed a little bit yesterday, we are asking health professionals who would like to volunteer to help to sign you up at our Mass response website at massmarresponse.org. We’re partnering with the Mass Medical Society to match volunteers with our communities and healthcare providers based on volunteers’ skillsets and where they’re most needed. It just went live. We already have four individuals since this morning who have signed up. We have an immediate need for respiratory therapists and public health nurses. We’d like to thank the Mass Medical Society for agreeing to be our matchmaker for all of these healthcare professionals. Thank you.

Charlie Baker: (14:43)
So before we take questions, Dr. [Lai 00:00:14:45], would you come talk a little bit about how many people have used the system, how much data you guys have collected and how that factors into the way you improve the quality of the way the system operates? Because I think that would be important for people to hear.

Dr. Lai: (14:58)
Sure. Thanks, Governor Baker. So we started the company in 2013 and the way we built Buoy was we actually read by hand thousands of clinical papers to teach the program the statistics that underlined medicine. That took us four years and we launched that product in March of 2017. Since then we’ve had about seven and a half million users on Buoy. We see a new person every 13 seconds. And every single time someone uses the program we learn a little bit more about how each individual is different. In early… I’m sorry. In early February we released our coronavirus protocols, taking state’s department of public of health and CDC guidelines and layered that into our program.

Charlie Baker: (15:51)
Questions about that or other stuff?

Speaker 2: (15:51)
Just to clarify what’s going on here with people coming into the state. You’re talking about Massachusetts residents as well who might live in New Hampshire. I mean, how would that work? Anybody coming over state lines?

Charlie Baker: (16:03)
Right now it’s just going to be people coming through the airport, two airports. Flying in from out of state and to the two airports, who are coming in on a train to South Station from out of state. And there will be message boards and information available, in rest areas associated with, and on the turnpike in areas associated with folks coming South, basically up from the New York area.

Speaker 3: (16:28)
How do you enforce this-

Speaker 2: (16:30)
[crosstalk 00:16:30] residents as well?

Speaker 3: (16:31)
Can you address enforcement or even penalties at this point?

Charlie Baker: (16:34)
I would call it at this point instruction and advisory. There is no enforcement mechanism.

Speaker 3: (16:39)
Will there be a penalty though? I mean, if somebody doesn’t-

Charlie Baker: (16:41)
No.

Speaker 4: (16:42)
What about people who live out of state and work in Massachusetts?

Charlie Baker: (16:42)
Who live out of state and work in Massachusetts?

Speaker 4: (16:44)
Yeah. People who live in New Hampshire.

Charlie Baker: (16:48)
Well, first of all, we’ve obviously shut down a lot of non-essential operations and we believe that the folks who are working in Massachusetts at this point in time are pretty clear in the guidance that we’ve set out there for the people who are part of the Commonwealth. And obviously again, it’s impossible to ensure that everybody complies with all of this. But if you’re working in Massachusetts, that means you’re doing something, it’s essential, and you’re getting a ton of guidance and advice that’s coming from us and probably from the people you work with and work for about what we expect people to do when they’re not at work.

Speaker 2: (17:21)
So a Massachusetts resident, just to clarify, coming back from Florida, let’s say they’ve lived down there a month or two, that instruction applies to them?

Charlie Baker: (17:28)
Yeah, they’re going to get a flyer and a note when they show up and get off their plane that encourages them to spend two weeks in a self quarantine. Yeah.

Speaker 3: (17:38)
I know that Florida’s governor, I think, said they’re going to be tracing people, because as you mentioned, other states are doing this. I mean, are you looking at something like that where you would track the movements potentially?

Charlie Baker: (17:46)
Well, keep in mind that we’re already doing the work of tracing and tracking people when they are deemed positive. That information goes to the department of public health, it goes to the local departments of public health, and then there’s a lot of outreach to the person who’s been deemed positive with respect to who they’ve been in contact with and who they’ve been in touch with. I fully expect now that we’ve ramped up our testing activity that we’re going to significantly ramp up our tracing and tracking activity as well. And I might ask secretary Sardis to speak a little bit that.

Speaker 3: (18:19)
But not of travelers, really, I mean, at this point is my question.

Charlie Baker: (18:22)
No, the traveler piece at this point is if you’re coming back from someplace we want you to spend two weeks self quarantining. Why don’t you talk a little bit about the stuff we’ve been doing to set up tracing and tracking?

Secretary Sardis: (18:39)
The governor’s doing great preview for our next series of announcements. So as you know, anyone who tests positive has to self isolate and then we determine who their close contacts are and then trace those individuals and their contacts and it’s whether they have to… And they have to self quarantine for 14 days and stay in touch with the local boards of health. We’re actually going to be rolling out in much more extensive tracing in the beginning of the week we’ll be announcing far more extensive tracing because if you think about how this has spread, it is for every individual who is positive and the contacts around them and then the contacts around them. So what we really want to do is not just the individual who has been tested positive in their media contacts, but then also looking at the spread of the individuals on the next circle around them. So we’re going to be rolling out a much more extensive tracing going forward.

Speaker 2: (19:43)
Governor, since New York has been such a hotspot, have you considered taking temperatures of people coming in from New York, are coming over the border on the flight?

Charlie Baker: (19:54)
The answer at this point is we are engaged in discussions with a lot of people about what we can and cannot do. And there are plenty of legal and constitutional issues that are involved in this. We certainly believe encouraging people and instructing people who come back to Massachusetts from someplace else to self quarantine for 14 days is a perfectly reasonable and logical thing to expect them to do. And we certainly believe messaging as aggressively as we can. Folks who are coming up from the greater New York area is a good idea as well. Whether we can do much more beyond that or not, it’s going to be a function of A, what the public health people tell us they think would be beneficial, and then B, what we think is actually sustainable from a legal point of view.

Speaker 5: (20:44)
Governor people seem to be heeding the guidance to hunker down, but are you seeing or hearing any activities or practice out there that concerns you that people are doing something that they might not be? And what remedies do you have? What else do you have in your toolbox if people don’t continue to hunker down?

Charlie Baker: (21:04)
Boy, I follow a lot of the photography that’s on social media from people around the Commonwealth. And for the most part, all I see are empty streets and empty parking lots. And we obviously talked to the folks at the T every day about what’s going on with their volume, which is pretty much created almost across the board. And lieutenant governors talking to mayors every single day and city managers about what they’re seeing in their communities. And the message from almost everybody is, it’s really quiet out there.

Speaker 3: (21:41)
Have you-

Speaker 4: (21:42)
Governor, can you [inaudible 00:21:42] this week your target of 3500 deaths on average per day. You haven’t really explained why you picked 3500 as the goal. Is that some… Are you trying to get the half the population? Two-thirds of the population? A quarter? Because 3500 would take a long time to do those types of numbers.

Speaker 6: (22:00)
… is 3,500 would take a long time to do those types of inventories. Can you explain a little bit about why 3,500 was a number you were targeting?

Charlie Baker: (22:09)
So my recollection on this one, and I’m sure the Secretary will correct me if I get it wrong, is that 3,500 tests given the size of Massachusetts would be equivalent to the daily testing regimen that was going on in South Korea, given their size and how many tests they were doing on a daily basis, at this point in time in the process. I fully expect, if this goes according to plan, I think what the Secretary said when we talked about 3,500 out of Quest, is that’s benchmark number one. There’s going to be a benchmark number two and a benchmark number three as we go forward here, especially as we roll out a more expanded program with respect to tracing and tracking.

Speaker 6: (22:51)
What is your focus, do you have a goal on how much of the population you’d like to test?

Charlie Baker: (22:58)
I think we want to test anybody who’s deemed as symptomatic, to begin with based on those criteria that we got from the CDC. And then to the extent that there are people who’ve had close contact with those people, we want to test them as well.

Speaker 7: (23:14)
Governor, the EPA announced last night, they’re suspending all of-

Charlie Baker: (23:17)
Which?

Speaker 7: (23:17)
The EPA-

Charlie Baker: (23:17)
EPA, okay.

Speaker 7: (23:18)
… announced that they’re suspending all enforcement of environmental violations during this crisis, your thoughts about that. And are the state environmental laws enough to protect the environment during this as the EPA eases up?

Charlie Baker: (23:33)
So that announcement came out kind of late yesterday and we’ve asked our folks to give us guidance on that. I don’t have that guidance yet, but as soon as we do, we’ll obviously share it with you.

Speaker 8: (23:43)
Governor Baker, the governor of Rhode Island is going a step further. People coming in from New York on ground transportation are being required to give personal information of family members, maybe turn over their license. Is that where you’ve seen some constitutional issues?

Charlie Baker: (24:01)
First of all, I don’t know how to put this politely, so I’m just going to say it, we get told a lot of things about what other states are doing, okay? Just as I’m sure, other governors and lieutenant governors and health and human service secretaries get told a lot about what other states are doing too. And then we follow up and find out if that’s in fact what they are doing and sometimes it is and sometimes not quite. So I’m not going to comment on the specific there, because I’ve had several conversations with Governor Raimondo about what they’re doing there and some of what I’ve heard is different than what she says they’re actually doing.

Charlie Baker: (24:46)
So we’ll get back to you on that particular question, but just understand that there’s so much, as I said in my remarks, there’s so much information out there at this point, even for us as public officials, sometimes when we follow up with our colleagues in other states, the answer we get about what they’re actually doing is a little different than the one we’ve been told, or in some cases, even folks in the media and elsewhere have been told.

Speaker 9: (25:14)
[crosstalk 00:25:14] Businesses that are not explicitly in the essential business list are saying maybe they should still stay open because they’re adjacent or helping essential businesses, manufacturers making tape measurements or screws. I was wondering if there is any additional clarity on that? Also, are gun shops considered essential? There seems to be some inconsistency in how some gun shops are responding to the essential businesses order here.

Charlie Baker: (25:46)
So gun shops, under our order, are not considered essential. With respect to supply chains, there’s a lot of back and forth between the folks at economic development, which is kind of the keeper of the keys with regard to how the essential worker and essential business criteria were established. And they do give people guidance on whether or not in fact somebody does fit with the supply chain associated with an essential provider. Sometimes they do by the way, and sometimes they don’t. I think in some ways, what I can say is it the back and forth that’s going on, at least that I’ve heard, and you’ve heard, I believe lieutenant governor, from the businesses that we’ve been talking to, which we are doing literally all the time, is that people feel pretty good about the clarity and the quality and the turnaround on the guidance that they’re getting from us.

Charlie Baker: (26:45)
But remember, if you’re not essential, just remember if you’re not essential and you don’t spend any time in your brick and mortar facility and you work from home, you still have the ability to operate. And so there are folks who are in nonessential businesses who are not working in the office, who are doing whatever they were doing before in the office online and they are “still working.”

Speaker 10: (27:10)
Are cities and towns going to be able to get access to town by town data if we’re doing more tracing? There’s a lot of criticism that we’re still on a county based data system and not municipal. I’m curious if that’s something [inaudible 00:27:24] talk to the mayors and the municipal leaders, very frustrated with the county system.

Charlie Baker: (27:27)
Well I should… I could get this wrong, but I-

Speaker 11: (27:34)
You won’t get it wrong.

Charlie Baker: (27:37)
Go ahead.

Speaker 11: (27:37)
So we report publicly on county basis. Local boards of health know their positive cases.

Speaker 10: (27:45)
Do you select boards of local leaders, does the leaders know their count?

Speaker 11: (27:50)
Local boards of health is who we report.

Speaker 12: (27:52)
First responders know addresses too.

Speaker 11: (27:53)
Right, first responders know addresses. But local boards of health because they’re really our extension, if you would, to do the contact tracing. So I would say that local boards of health, which is a part of municipal government, they know their numbers for their towns.

Speaker 12: (28:10)
What do you tell the public though, who want to know how many cases are in their town? Why shouldn’t they have access to that?

Speaker 11: (28:20)
So this is where we try to balance public health and individual privacy and to avoid people from being bullied. And there have been cases, particularly in the early part before it was a pandemic, of individuals who were either outed on Facebook or people assumed that someone had tested positive. And so that is the balance that we continue to try to strike. And I know there’s not a complete answer for some people, but I will tell you local boards of health know the individuals who have test positive from their communities.

Speaker 7: (28:56)
Isn’t there a danger though that if you don’t go town by town that people may have a false impression that, “Oh, I don’t hear anything coming out of my town. My town is okay, not going to be subject to this.”

Speaker 11: (29:10)
I think when you see the numbers and the number of the counties that we report every day, I think it is fair to say that we have community spread in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. We’ve started, as you know, started to put out the age data, which was so that no one can see that, well this age group is immune. I take the concern of communities thinking that they want to know, but if you share that kind of health information status about an individual, you also want to ensure that they are also safe and protected from bullying in the like and being spotted by someone. So what I’m telling you is this is a very constant conversation that we’re having. It’s one thing in Boston, but if you lived in a community of like several hundred people, does that person want to be identified?

Speaker 7: (30:05)
But you’d just be giving out a number.

Speaker 11: (30:06)
And what is the… There would be nothing to preclude a local board of health from saying we have 15 positive cases in their community.

Speaker 6: (30:14)
So the local municipal Board of Health could make that public?

Speaker 11: (30:17)
Yeah.

Speaker 7: (30:18)
Would you encourage them to make that public?

Speaker 9: (30:20)
Sorry, to Steve’s point, I mean we had this issue the last couple of weeks with Worcester County and the DA’s office officials were initial told that the information had to come from the State Department of Public Health. And it took some time for the public to learn that a judge, who had been in three court houses, was now being quarantined after testing positive. So I mean, with a county as large as Worcester County, what can you tell those residents who are concerned about, “Well, we don’t know if this applies to our city or if it infected places where we went to go to court, things like that?

Speaker 11: (30:55)
No. Again, as we continue to sort of roll out who’s positive, contact tracing in the like, the greater we will know what the impact is on individual communities, counties, employers in the like. That’s my best answer.

Speaker 9: (31:09)
Thanks everybody.

Charlie Baker: (31:09)
Can I just add one other point here? I mean it’s not like we have all the latitude and all the authority over what we can and can’t say. The reason that first responders have access to addresses in the communities in which they operate, that they get from their Board of Health, is because the FDA issued guidance… Was it two Fridays ago? [crosstalk 00:31:32] It was at some point fairly recent that the FDA issued guidance that basically said… And the term they used was something like business partners. It wasn’t quite business partners, but it was something like business partners, could share limited information. And what they’re really saying is that local boards of health can tell first responders not who these people are, but they can tell them what their addresses are.

Charlie Baker: (31:56)
Because that was viewed as something that would be important for first responders to know, with respect to the protection of their own health, with respect to this stuff. But I think in some respects, there are certain things we definitely can do and there’s certain things we can’t and some of them have to do with where our authority begins and ends and some of it has to do with where federal authority begins and ends, which gets us back to some of the questions around what you can really do with respect to interstate travel and transportation as well.

Speaker 9: (32:27)
Governor, on that note, I mean state to state restrictions are so rare. Can you just kind of speak to the uniqueness of this decision by not just you but obviously other states to tell people you got to stay home for 14 days if you’re coming in here?

Charlie Baker: (32:39)
I think the… I mean if you look at kind of the region that we live in at this point, the Northeastern part of the US, I think everybody at this point has a stay-at-home advisory of some kind in place or a stay-at-home order depending upon the state. I mean, I said to you folks before that the difference between the words that are actually used in advisory versus the words they use in an order are…

Charlie Baker: (33:03)
The words that are actually used in an advisory versus the words that are used in an order are not that much different, but everybody’s basically been playing the same song, which is these businesses are essential, and on that one we’re all working for the most part off a federal guideline, which represents what I would call kind of the minimum. I mean, if the feds say something’s essential, it’s essential. You can’t take it off. Okay? Except with limited exceptions. Each state, based on the nature of its own economy, makes modest adjustments to what shows up on that federal essential business list. But on the orders themselves that are being issued, especially with respect to the stay at home orders, the messaging, the expectation, the goal of these orders that are being issued everywhere is basically the same, which is, if you’re an essential worker, go to work and go home.

Charlie Baker: (34:02)
If you are in a community or a state that has an order like this in place, you need to go to the doctor. Check first of all with Buoy. See if you can do what you need to do on a telehealth basis to avoid creating contact between you and the provider community. If that’s not going to be the answer and you need to see a doctor, go. You can go to the grocery store. If you have a non-essential business and you can do it online without using bricks and mortar, that’s okay too. But the guidance coming from almost everybody is pretty similar, and in many ways it’s based on the framework that we operate under from a legal point of view at the state level and a sort of overarching point of view with respect to legally what the feds are saying we can do and we can’t do. And certainly people are going to push the envelope on this stuff in various places.

Charlie Baker: (34:56)
But again, we’re all basically playing the same game and somewhat singing the same song, pretty much from Maine to certainly New Jersey and probably beyond.

Speaker 13: (35:07)
Governor, quickly, President Trump is very focused on getting America back to work by Easter, call it an Easter resurrection of business and the economy, if you will. Do you see any hope of that here in Massachusetts?

Charlie Baker: (35:19)
I think the guidance we’re getting from the advisory committee that was set up by the command center by Secretary Sudders and the advisory, the information we’re getting from public health experts and from healthcare providers here in Massachusetts is that, yeah. No, we’re not going to be up and running by Easter. No.

Speaker 14: (35:50)
Thank you.

Charlie Baker: (35:50)
Thank you.

Speaker 15: (35:55)
I bet that last part was going to be really good.

Speaker 16: (35:57)
Yeah.

Speaker 17: (35:57)
Stay tuned. [inaudible 00:00:35:59].

Speaker 15: (36:01)
Have a good weekend.

Speaker 15: (36:02)
You almost let a cuss slip yesterday.

Charlie Baker: (36:05)
I know.

Speaker 15: (36:07)
It made great air!

Speaker 18: (36:08)
Got you loud and clear.

Speaker 18: (41:05)
Move those tag lines over yet?

Speaker 18: (41:19)
Those are tag lines, right? Ah.