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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information: What You Need to Know

Last updated on October 19, 2020

Updated Visitor Guidelines for the Spaulding Rehabilitation Network

Updated October 19, 2020

In effort to protect our patients and limit exposure to COVID-19 as cases in Massachusetts rise, at Spaulding Hospital Cambridge, Spaulding Cape Cod and Spaulding Boston effective as of Tuesday 10/20 we are limiting visitors to 1 per day for up to 1 hour and reducing visitor hours to 3pm-7pm.  Spaulding Nursing Center Brighton, per June 4th, announcement has a different set of visitor regulations as a skilled nursing home viewable here.

Visitors for patients only will be allowed on a limited basis with the following restrictions:

  • Visitors will only be allowed onsite from 3pm-7pm
  • Limit of 1 visitor per patient at a time with a maximum of 1 per day.
  • Visitors must wear SRN provided facemask at all times during the duration of the visit. Click here to learn how to put on, wear, and take off a mask. 
  • Visitors should limit visits to up to 1 hour
  • Visitors will be limited to access to the patient’s room with no access to public or common areas such as cafeterias and lounges.
  • Visitors are expected to practice hand hygiene and social distancing of 6 feet.
  • All visitors must be over 18 years of age.
  • Visitors should call ahead for the patients schedule as no visitors will be allowed in patient rooms during therapy or treatment sessions.
  • All visitors will be screened upon entry and need to sign-in and attest they are symptom free. Anyone experiencing any of the following symptoms will not be allowed to visit until cleared of symptoms:
    • Fever or feeling feverish
    • Sore throat
    • New cough (not related to chronic condition)
    • New nasal congestion or new runny nose (not related to seasonal allergies)
    • Muscle aches
    • New loss of smell or taste
    • Shortness of Breath

    View updated vistor guidelines in Spanish, Portuguese, and Haitian Creole.

    Spaulding clinicians may have to alter or restrict visitation when medically necessary. All visitors are encouraged to contact the facility or patient prior to planning a visit. At this time, this applies only to patient visitors. We still do not allow visitors for any other reasons. We understand these are challenging times and we must do so in a measured and responsible way to ensure the continued safety of our patients and staff. We thank you for your support and cooperation to ensure we maintain a healthy environment for all.

    Updated Visitor Guidelines as of August 6,2020: Mass COVID-19 Travel Order

    Any visitor that has traveled in the past 14 days to any area subject to the MA COVID-19 Travel Order issued on August 1st, 2020, must comply prior to visiting an Spaulding Rehabilation facility.

    All visitors entering Massachusetts, including returning residents, who do not meet an exemption, are required to:

    • Complete the Massachusetts Travel Form prior to arrival, unless you are visiting from a lower-risk state designated by the Department of Public Health.
    • Quarantine for 14 days or produce a negative COVID-19 test result that has been administered up to 72-hours prior to your arrival in Massachusetts.

    For exemptions and more information visit mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-travel-order.

    What you need to know

    The coronavirus situation is very fluid, and we are doing everything we can to provide you with the most up to date information. Rest assured that there are many leaders and experts from across Spaulding Rehabilation Network and Mass General Brigham who have been working tirelessly to ensure that we have the best possible plans, protocols and resources in place to protect patients, colleagues and our community. We continue to coordinate with the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) and state public health officials as we take all necessary precautions to prepare us for providing safe care to anyone who presents with COVID-19. Here’s what you need to know:

    What is the Coronavirus?

    The cause of this outbreak has been identified as a novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

    Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that can cause symptoms ranging from the common cold to severe respiratory illness. Certain coronaviruses can infect animals, which occasionally spread from animals to humans, such as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV). These viruses can then also evolve to spread among people.

    This new strain of coronavirus appears to have rapidly evolved to more easily transmit from person to person.

    How did this outbreak occur?

    Initial cases with this infection were thought to be associated with a live animal market in Wuhan City, China. However, not all subsequent cases have had this exposure.

    The number of infections and subsequent deaths from the novel coronavirus have climbed daily. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared a global health pandemic to highlight the spread of this infection and support prevention efforts.

    What is the current situation?

    The situation is rapidly evolving with new information updated daily, please consult the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and CDC websites for the latest updates. 

    Spaulding is working daily with Mass General Brigham, State and Federal authorities to manage the response and support our communities’ needs, with a focus on post-acute care and expertise. Spaulding Rehabilitation Network has set up a specialized unit at our Spaulding Hospital Cambridge facility which you can learn about here featured on WBUR and NBC-10 Boston. Everyone should continue to follow mandates from leaders to help limit the community spread of the virus. Our caregivers continue to stay focused on supporting our patients and each other.

    Spaulding Nursing and Therapy Center Brighton has made unique changes to its operations as a skilled nursing facility.  Learn more about its updates, policies and procedures here.

    Our Safe Care Commitment 

    Your health and safety is our top priority. As we prepare to welcome back more patients, we are taking a comprehensive approach to prevent the spread of infectious disease.

    The entire team at Spaulding Rehabilitation Network is dedicated to keeping our patients, staff and community members safe as we reopen our practices, clinics and facilities in alignment with the Commonwealth’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We are fully prepared to provide you with the care you need most, when you need it—and we've made a commitment to keep you safe every step of the way. Learn more about our Safe Care Commitment. 

    Spaulding and Mass General Brigham have launched a system-wide effort to ensure that patients, providers, and employees across the health care system are treated equally and have access to necessary information during the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes a resource repository containing:

    • Multilingual resources to serve the needs of patients, providers, and employees who speak languages other than English

    • Resources to support clinicians working with people with disabilities

    Visit the MGH Disparities Solutions website for more information. 

    What can be done to prevent the spread of coronavirus?

    As always, hand and respiratory hygiene are the best way to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses. We recommend the following:

    • Frequent handwashing with soap and water or with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
    • When coughing or sneezing, cover your nose and mouth with a flexed elbow or tissue. Wash your hands after.
    • Avoid close contact with individuals who have a fever or cough.

    Please note, the facemasks that are available for purchase at your local drug store are not appropriate for protecting yourself from the coronavirus. Practicing hand hygiene is your best defense.  

    How do I know if I should be evaluated for coronavirus?

    If you develop a fever and cough or shortness of breath, you should contact your health care provider. If you have had close contact with someone showing these symptoms who has recently traveled from the identified countries listed above, you should also contact your health care provider. The CDC believes at this time that symptoms of the new coronavirus may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after exposure.

    If you believe you have been exposed to COVID-19, contact your health care provider.

    Additional information is available on the CDC and WHO websites.

    What can I do to help?

    During this unprecedented time, the entire Spaulding Rehabilitation Network & Partners HealthCare at Home community of doctors, nurses, therapists, and staff have mobilized with two priorities front and center: to keep every patient safe and to keep all those who serve our patients safe.

    Many of you have asked how you can help. Your generous gift to the Spaulding/PHH Emergency Response Fund helps equip President David Storto and his leadership team to direct resources where they are needed most urgently and flexibly to address these priorities, day by day. Thank you for your support during this challenging time. Give to the Spaulding/PHH Emergency Response Fund

    Innovation

    In an effort to coordinate and facilitate the development of new innovations that flatten the COVID19 curve and protect and empower our front-line clinical staff, we have launched a Mass General Brigham Center for COVID Innovation. The Center will serve to: 1) identify and empower experts from inside and outside Mass General Brigham that can move meritorious ideas towards practice, and 2) help identify internal and external resources necessary to operationalize these ideas. Submit ideas for projects addressing the diagnosis, therapy, or clinical care of patients (including PPE) with coronavirus infection.  Email us.

    Company/ Personal Donations of Materials

    For companies and people interested in donated supplies and items you can contact received through the Covid Donations mailbox. They will follow up on what items are accepted and the process to ensure donations will be disbursed to facilities throughout the Mass General Brigham health system including Spaulding. Email us

    Sourcing/Procurement Referrals

    This email was created to assist with all the product purchasing opportunities.  Please feel free to forward any opportunities to this email, or refer sources to this email.  The Mass General Brigham Supply Chain team will monitor the mailbox and contact those referrals that fit our systems need. Email us.

    Mass General Brigham COVID-19 Nurse Line

    Call the Mass General Brigham COVID-19 Nurse Line at 617.724.7000. Staffed from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 am to 5 pm Saturday and Sunday, nurses are available to respond to general or specific questions about COVID-19 for those who have symptoms, believe they may have been exposed, or are looking to learn more. If treatment is needed, they will guide you through next steps. Interpreters can be added to calls for patients who need it.