Dear Colleagues,

COVID-19 Cases:

BMC Total Inpatients

3

BMC Inpatients Requiring ICU Care

1

BMC Inpatients Under Investigation (pending + negatives treated as positives) 

0

Cumulative Staff Who Have Tested Positive

1,164 (as of 6/28)

Massachusetts Cases

664,307

Click to see the most up-to-date city, state, and national numbers: Boston | Massachusetts  | United States

NEW: Written Consent Now Preferred Method for Signing Forms

After Infection Control and Legal review, we have returned to written consent as the preferred method for signing forms as of Tuesday, July 6. This has become important as the State is now requiring written consent once again for medical orders for life-sustaining treatment (MOLST) forms, and we anticipate the standard will continue to move in that direction for others.

Verbal/directed consent will still be allowed for exceptions following the normal rules as it was prior to COVID and as permitted by BMC policy, but is no longer the standard as it was during the height of the pandemic.

NEW: Updated Face Mask Recommendations for Health Care Workers

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health continues to recommend facemasks for all health care personnel. Following their guidance, BMC’s policy is:

  1. When facemasks are used to protect one’s nose and mouth from exposure to splashes, sprays, splatter, and respiratory secretions (e.g., for patients on droplet precautions), they should be removed and discarded after each patient encounter. Please remove and replace your surgical mask upon exiting a precaution room.
  2. Facemasks are required while in all clinical areas. They can be used for multiple patient encounters.
  • The facemask should be removed and discarded if soiled, damaged, or hard to breathe through.
  • Facemasks should not be stored or put down on a surface. Any facemask put down on a surface should be discarded and replaced.
  • If you remove your facemask to eat or drink, or during a break, perform hand hygiene with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub before and after touching your mask.
  • Do not touch your facemask. If you touch or adjust their facemask, immediately perform hand hygiene.
  • If you need to remove your facemask, please leave the clinical area before doing so.

Masks will continue to be provided upon entry to the hospital. Additional supplies of surgical facemasks are stocked in all departments and outside of all rooms with patients on precautions. Staff should obtain a second mask from their department prior to going on a break or lunch so they can replace their mask after eating or drinking. If you forget your mask while eating in the cafeteria, a mask can be obtained from the cashier.

REMINDER: Updated Process for Vaccination in Ambulatory Clinics

In order to ensure we vaccinate as many patients as possible when they come for in-person visits, there is a new process for vaccinations in Ambulatory clinics. Instead of paging the COVID-19 vaccine nurse team when a patient is interested in the vaccine, the nurse team will now receive a list of all eligible, unvaccinated patients and approach patients on the list who have clinic appointments. The conversation will be documented in Health Maintenance. If a nurse is unable to speak with the patient before their visit, the clinic can still page for a COVID-19 vaccine if the patient is interested.

Please continue to support our vaccination efforts by having conversations with patients and encouraging vaccination. If you have any questions or concerns, please email Kate Masters, senior manager of Ambulatory performance, at Kathleen.masters@bmc.org.

REMINDER: Massachusetts VaxMillions Giveaway

Vaccinated residents of Massachusetts 18 years or older have the chance to sign up to win one of five $1M prizes. You can sign up no matter when you got vaccinated. Residents 12-17 years old can sign up for a chance to win a college scholarship. Find more details and sign up on the State’s site.