Dear Colleagues,

COVID-19 Cases:

BMC Total Inpatients

6

BMC Inpatients Requiring ICU Care

2

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

1

Cumulative Staff Who Have Tested Positive

1,175 (as of 7/20)

Massachusetts Cases

667,341

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

REMINDER: COVID-19 Vaccine Workplace Requirement for all BMCHS Employees and LIPs

Last week BMC Health System announced we will be requiring that all employees and LIPs be vaccinated against COVID-19. This includes those working off-site (at-home, out-of-state, and off-campus, including those fully off-site), residents, students, licensed independent practitioners, interns, vendors, volunteers, and any other contracted personnel.

The data shows that getting vaccinated is the most important thing each of us can do to protect our patients, members, families, and communities from COVID-19 and the emerging variants. To hear from some of your colleagues about why they decided to get vaccinated, visit the Hub.

Details of the COVID-19 vaccination requirement can be found on the COVID Vaccine Compliance page on the Hub.

NEW: COVID-19 Cases on the Rise in Massachusetts

While breakthrough infections in people who have been vaccinated for COVID-19 are rare, it is important to be aware that COVID-19 cases are increasing in Massachusetts. In particular, the percentage of cases that are the Delta variant continues to grow, and the variant now accounts for the majority of cases in the United States.

Even if you are fully vaccinated, please continue to be vigilant, practice hand hygiene, and wear masks when required.

REMINDER: Masks No Longer Required for Fully Vaccinated Staff in Administrative Areas

BMC will no longer be requiring masks for fully vaccinated staff members in administrative and certain non-clinical areas of BMCHS buildings. Please visit the Hub for a full list of areas where masks are no longer required.

Anyone can choose to continue wearing a mask, even if fully vaccinated, and masks will continue to be made available to all staff.

All staff and LIPs, regardless of vaccination status, must also continue to follow all PPE guidance for patient care.

NEW: Hyde Park @ Menino YMCA Vaccine Site Closing July 23

On Friday, July 23, the Hyde Park @ Menino YMCA vaccine location will be closing. We will be continuing to provide vaccinations at our other community vaccine sites, in BMC ambulatory clinics, and at pop-up events around the Boston area. A full list of Massachusetts vaccination locations can also be found on mass.gov. Please continue to encourage anyone who is not yet vaccinated to get vaccinated at one of these sites.

NEW: New Workflow for COVID-19 Vaccination for Inpatients

In order to maximize vaccination of our patients and to offer it in as many venues as possible, today BMC launched a new workflow allowing inpatient providers to order COVID-19 vaccines in Epic for admitted patients. While many of our patients are already vaccinated, we know many either have not started their vaccination series, or still require a second dose.

We are recommending that patients be vaccinated on day of discharge, if possible. After reviewing side effects and past vaccinations with the patient, and confirming the availability of the desired vaccine, please use the Orders and Order Set Search to order the vaccine. The full workflow can be found on the eMERGE SharePoint site.

NEW: Nebulized Treatments Should Be Used for COVID-Negative Inpatients

As we continue to modify and update many of our guidelines regarding precautions around use of aerosol generating procedures (AGPs), we are returning to our previous standard of using nebulized treatments instead of metered dose inhalers (MDIs) for all of our COVID-negative inpatients. Treatment with nebulized therapy will no longer require airborne precautions in COVID-negative patients.  Additionally, COVID-negative patients in semi-private rooms can receive nebulized treatments.

We will continue to recommend the use of MDIs, where feasible, as inhaled treatment in COVID-positive patients and patients under investigation. This guidance also does not apply to our outpatient areas –use of MDIs remains preferred in our ambulatory settings.