Daily COVID-19 Update: March 18, 2020
Please read today’s updates.
Important Links and Contact Numbers:
Command Center: 617-414-6860 (operating 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily)
Call for any needs related to COVID-19.
Working Well Clinic: [email protected]
Staff and providers should use this email address to report symptoms of and possible exposure to COVID-19.
COVID-19 Information on the Hub: https://internal.bmc.org/news-events/news/where-find-information-about-covid-19-coronavirus-disease
This is our intranet and requires network access. Everything posted here related to COVID-19 is also posted on the external site listed below, including clinical guidelines, screening, testing, and PPE usage.
COVID-19 Information on BMC.org: https://www.bmc.org/covid-19-information-employees
This is hosted on the external website and is accessible when not on the network.
UPDATED: Travel Policy
To help minimize the transmission of COVID-19, please note the following travel restrictions, which were updated and are effective as of March 18, 2020, for BMC, BMCHP and BMC Health System staff, and students managed by BMC staff.
UPDATE: Working Well Clinic
The Working Well Clinic has continued to refine its operations and has increased staffing over the past week. Thank you for your patience as we train new staff and work to clear the back-log of inquiries from staff across the BMC Health System.
- The Working Well Clinic has developed a COVID-19 employee exposure reference tool.
- Employees should continue to send questions and requests to the [email protected]. Hours for email answering will be 6 a.m. – 10 p.m.
- The Working Well Clinic is also working to clear emergency hires in addition to essential new hires e.g., Lab testing team members, EVS staff, etc.
NEW: BMC Advocacy Efforts
Led by our Government Affairs team, and in coordination with clinicians and staff across the hospital, BMC has a number of advocacy efforts underway related to COVID-19, many of which are specifically focused on protecting vulnerable populations. At the city, state, and federal levels, we are working to:
- Access stockpiled PPE supplies and equipment, as well as increase COVID-19 testing capacity.
- Ensure that patients with substance use disorder can receive their medication without interruptions by lifting limits on take-home doses and providing telehealth visits for patients.
- Partner with the City, Boston Healthcare for the Homeless, Pine Street Inn, and others around COVID-19, including designating tents to care for the homeless population.
- Make certain that our staff can get to work safely using public transit and that there are child care options available to staff who have children out of school.
NEW: Social Service Relief Fund Being Set Up for Patients
Our Development Office is establishing a new social service fund to support our patient families with emergency care and support through the life of the COVID-19 public health emergency. Many companies and individuals have reached out to the Office to ask how they can help financially. We will update you with more information as it is finalized.
NEW: Volunteer Babysitting and Other Services Available
A medical student-led volunteer initiative has been set up to offer childcare and other support services to all BMC providers and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Service support is open to all—RNs, physicians, technicians, social workers, case managers, support staff—anyone working at BMC.
- Services include: grocery and pharmacy runs, childcare/babysitting, and other miscellaneous tasks.
- If you have access to similar services through outside resources, please continue to use them if possible so that our services can be distributed equitably to those with the greatest immediate need.
- Please click here for more details.
NEW: Video Series – Insights from Departments and Leaders
With all the rapid changes related to COVID-19, we're sharing quick video insights from departments and leaders across campus to help our community feel connected and learn more about what's happening, how work is changing, and what we're doing together to protect patients and staff. Check the page for regular updates.
UPDATED: Working Remotely and Maintaining Patient Privacy
If you are working remotely, you must continue to follow all BMC policies and procedures regarding HIPAA and protected health information (PHI). If you have an issue fulfilling your job responsibilities due to technology limitations, contact the Service Desk at 617-414-4500 and reach out to the Privacy Office if you have any questions or concerns: (617) 414-1800, [email protected]. Some important reminders for employees who are now working remotely:
- Do not send PHI or BMC confidential information to your personal email.
- Do not send PHI or BMC confidential information to your home printer.
- Do not throw out PHI in your home trash or recycling bins.
- Do not fax any patient information from a personal fax machine.
- Encrypt emails going to external parties by typing “SECURE” in the subject line.
UPDATED: Ambulatory FAQs
The Ambulatory FAQs were updated on March 18.
REMINDER: Using Zoom for Video and Audio Conferencing
Zoom is a platform for video/audio conferencing, chat, and webinars. Zoom can be used through desktop/laptop computers, as well as through mobile devices. You can log in with your BMC credentials. Learn more here.
As of March 18, to protect the health of patients and staff, there are no visitors permitted on the inpatient units and the Emergency Department.
- Exceptions are OB, Pediatrics, and Labor and Delivery (primary caregivers) – one visitor only
- If a visitor exception is approved for an inpatient by the care team, the visitor will be screened and will not be permitted to visit if they have symptoms suggestive of COVID-19.
- Visitors under 18 are still prohibited from visiting any patients.