Dear Colleagues,

COVID-19 Cases:

BMC Total Inpatients

8

BMC Inpatients Requiring ICU Care

1

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

28

Cumulative Staff Who Have Tested Positive

390

Massachusetts Cases

133,359 (as of 10/6)

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

UPDATED: Compliance with COVID-19 Guidelines is Essential as Cases Begin to Rise

Boston is now in the “red zone” of communities most at risk for COVID-19, with a test positivity rate of over 4 percent and a steadily rising case rate. We also continue to see new clusters emerging at other medical centers throughout Massachusetts. Many of the neighborhoods with the highest case and positivity rates are neighborhoods that BMC serves, making it even more crucial that we do all we can to keep ourselves, our colleagues, our patients, and our communities safe.

We know that these guidelines have appeared in many previous Bulletins, as well as on the Hub and in other communications. But we still all must remain vigilant with mask usage, eye protection when caring directly for patients, hand hygiene, and physical distancing. Compliance with these guidelines is not only essential for your protection, but mandatory:

  • Wearing a surgical mask – not a cloth mask – over your mouth and nose is required for staff at all times on campus, unless you are alone in your office or eating. Cloth masks can be worn outside the hospital.
  • Employees working in group spaces (workrooms) and cubicles should wear a mask at all times and refrain from eating in those spaces.
  • If you are eating or drinking, and have your mask off, you MUST create a physical distance of a minimum of six feet from anyone you are with.
  • Occupancy in conference rooms is limited to the number posted at the entrance. Masks must be worn in groups of any size.
  • Adhere to PPE guidelines while seeing patients. Eye protection is required when seeing any patient in any setting. Some of the hospital-based clusters appear to be, in part, related to not wearing eye protection when interacting with patients, so please ensure that you are wearing eye protection in all patient care interactions.
  • Serve only individually-wrapped food at any department gatherings.

Please remind colleagues of this policy if you see them on campus not complying with these preventive measures.

REMINDER: All Employees Need to Complete Daily Symptom Screening Before Coming to Work

It is essential that all employees complete symptom screening before reporting to work on campus, as it is not safe for our teams, our patients, or our visitors, for employees and providers to come to work if they are experiencing symptoms. 

  • Employees and licensed independent practitioners scheduled for shifts on BMC’s main campus or in Quincy are required to use the COVID-19 symptom screening tool in Enterprise Health as part of the daily screening process prior to coming to work each shift.
  • Completing the symptom screener is easiest when you receive the text message on your phone. If you would like to receive the reminder via phone, please ensure that your cell phone number is up-to-date in Workday. This does not require your phone to be set up with BMC Imprivata.
  • Stay home if you’re feeling ill or have been exposed to COVID-19.

For questions, contact [email protected].

REMINDER: All Employees Must Receive a Flu Vaccination by Friday, October 30

As we continue to be in the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual flu vaccine is particularly important in mitigating the impact of seasonal illness, keeping our teams and patients healthy, and conserving important hospital resources.

All staff members, including those working off-site (at-home, out-of-state, and off-campus), are required to receive their annual flu vaccine to maintain work eligibility. To get your flu shot ON-campus:

If you prefer to get your flu shot from an OFF-campus provider, visit the Working Well Employee Health Portal to upload influenza vaccination receipts.  You can also use the portal to upload required supporting medical or religious documentation to decline vaccination for review and approval by the WWC.

The Working Well Employee Health Portal also gives you access to real-time health compliance updates and tools. Please email or call the Working Well Clinic at 617-638-8400 with any questions.

NEW: Virtual Town Hall Meeting Oct. 15

Join Kate Walsh for a virtual Town Hall Meeting on Thursday, October 15, from 1 - 2 p.m. via Zoom (link will be available on the Hub). The meeting will include information about our ongoing COVID-19 efforts to keep ourselves, our families, and our patients safe - among other organizational updates. 

REMINDER: Additional Seating Areas for Staff Added on Campus

Additional seating areas have been added across campus to help with distancing. Staff should eat in these areas, rather than in workrooms, to help maintain physical distancing. If you are eating with your colleagues, please maintain a distance of six feet. A full list of additional seating areas can be found on the Hub.

UPDATED: Upcoming Fit Testing Schedule

All employees who use Gerson 2130 masks need to be re-fit tested. Upcoming fit testing sessions are scheduled for:

  • Monday October 5: 2 – 5 p.m., Menino 2B
  • Tuesday October 6: 4:30 – 7:30 p.m., Menino 2A
  • Wednesday October 7: 6 – 9 a.m., Menino 2A
  • Thursday October 8: 2 – 5 p.m., FGH 1st floor conference room
  • Friday October 9: 6 – 9 a.m., Shapiro 1 conference room
  • Monday October 12: 6 – 9 a.m., Menino 2A
  • Tuesday October 13: 2 – 5 p.m., Menino 2B
  • Wednesday October 14: 4:30 – 7:30 p.m., Menino 2B
  • Thursday October 15: 2 – 5 p.m., Menino 2B
  • Friday October 16: 6 – 9 a.m., Shapiro 1 conference room