Dear Colleagues,

COVID-19 Cases:

BMC Total Inpatients

13

BMC Inpatients Requiring ICU Care

3

Cumulative Staff Who Have Tested Positive

1,367 (as of 10/18)

Massachusetts Cases

783,533

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

UPDATE: BMC COVID-19 Vaccination Workplace Requirement

We are very pleased to report that over 98 percent of employees and LIPs met the vaccine requirement deadline of last Friday. THANK YOU to everyone for continuing to do all you can to keep our patients, colleagues, families, and communities healthy.

NEW: COVID-19 Vaccine Second Dose Must be Received by November 19

If you have only received one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, your second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine (if not J&J) must be received no later than November 19 in order for you to be fully compliant. You can get your second dose at any location giving COVID-19 vaccines.

If you consented to an Epic pull in the Employee Health Portal for your first dose, your second dose will automatically be recorded in the system if you get it at BMC. If you manually uploaded proof of vaccination, you’ll need to do the same for your second dose.

Learn more on the employee vaccination requirement page.

NEW: Moderna and J&J Booster Vaccines and Vaccinations for Children Under 12 Years Old Expected in November

The CDC and FDA have been meeting and are expected to make new vaccination recommendations for Moderna and Johnson & Johnson (J&J) booster shots, as well as Pfizer vaccination for 5-11 year olds. If approved on the expected timeline, we anticipate being ready to administer Moderna and J&J boosters in early November and 5-11 year old vaccinations later in November.

The timeline for approval is dictated by FDA recommendations, CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) guidelines, and subject to final approval by the CDC director. Following the final approval, the CDC creates and releases a set of technical specifications to Epic and other hospital electronic medical record systems, which can result in a one to two week lag time from approval to hospital readiness, as we saw with Pfizer boosters.

Communications will be sent hospital-wide and to our patients once we are able to schedule and administer COVID-19 vaccines to any newly eligible patients.

Pfizer booster doses are currently available for people over 65 years old and people with certain medical conditions, jobs, or living situations who got two doses of the Pfizer vaccine at least six months ago. Anyone who needs any vaccine dose (first, second, third, or booster) can still get vaccinated at all BMC on-campus and community vaccination clinics, as well as local pharmacies such as CVS and Walgreens.

NEW: N95 Masks Now Required for Aerosol Generating Procedures

As of October 18, all health care workers are required to wear an N95 while caring for a patient who is undergoing an aerosol generating procedure (including nebulizer treatment, high flow oxygen, BiPAP, CPAP, intubation, and extubation, among other procedures), regardless of vaccination status. This recommendation is in accordance with recent CDC guidance developed to reduce the risk of inadvertent health care worker exposure to COVID-19 in the case of a presymptomatic or asymptomatic COVID-19 infection in a patient undergoing an aerosol generating procedure (AGP).

In addition, to further reduce risk of exposure to health care workers and patient roommates, patients undergoing continuous or recurrent AGPs (including nebulizer treatment, high flow oxygen, BiPAP, and CPAP) should undergo COVID-19 testing every three days via anterior nasal testing.