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Monday, March 30, 2020

麻州將獲得1000台呼吸器 州長呼籲民眾捐血 保持社交安全距離

(Boston Orange 周菊子整理報導) 麻州州長查理貝克(Charlie Baker)(30)日下午在疫情新況匯報中表示,聯邦政府已批准撥給麻州至少1000台呼吸器,本週起將陸續運抵。為增加醫護人手,州政府正放寬牌照申請及志工登記規定,還希望民眾踴躍捐血。
查理貝克表示,麻州上週末已從國家庫存那兒收到一批物資,轉發了28,000個口罩,12萬雙手套等醫用物資,並已斥資50萬元訂購相關貨品。聯邦政府的戰略準備小組也批准麻州的至少1000台呼吸器申請,本週起至四月初,將陸續運抵。
查理貝克估計麻州內的確診個案在47日至17日之間會陡升,他很希望能及早獲得更多醫療物資,藉以降低染病率及死亡率。
為此,麻州政府已和麻州醫學會合作,著手招募更多醫護人才。麻州公共衛生廳已發出命令,為某些醫護專業人才提供一經請求即發給(on-demand)牌照重新許可牌照,加快批准牌照給持有他州牌照,信譽良好的醫護人員,以及在過去十年內,信譽良好已退休的醫護人員。
上週麻州政府已推出招募醫療專業志工計畫,迄今已有1800人登記加入。
新平衡(New Balance)等廠商,都已同意在抗疫期間工廠轉型,生產面罩等醫療用品。
上週末,麻州做了10000次病毒檢測。現在總共有大約40,000人由麻州的21個檢測機構做過了檢測。週六及週日的每日做檢測人數已超過早前訂下的一天3500人目標。查理貝克強調,要抗疫,追蹤,隔離很關鍵。
麻州健康及人民服務長Marylou Sudders表示,她已授權麻州連繫者(Mass healthcare Connector)”暫緩因各種原因導致的結束服務,包括約有6000名欠款未繳者,1200016000左右到4月就會被藥店拒絕服務的人等。

上週五,麻州府推出https://www.buoyhealth.com/ 24小時開放,根據聯邦疾病防治中心準則執行的民營網上工具,容許麻州民眾隨時免費檢測自己是否已出現染患新型冠狀病毒症狀。迄今已有19,645人使用了該一服務。麻州政府的211熱線,也有 23,796人撥打過。(更新版)

Baker-Polito Administration Announces New Actions To Expand Health Care Workforce, Other Actions To Support Providers, Business During COVID-19

BOSTON – The Baker-Polito Administration today announced new actions that will support efforts to expand the Commonwealth’s health care workforce by expediting licensing for certain health care workers and onboarding for health care volunteers who have signed up through the Administration’s new online volunteer portal. The Administration also outlined a Department of Public Health order that will support continuing steps being taken to expand care capacity for older adults infected with COVID-19, in addition to other actions designed to support providers and businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Expedited Onboarding Of Health Care Volunteers: Last week, the Administration launched an initiative to recruit volunteer medical professionals to support hospitals as the Commonwealth continues to expand medical capacity. Since launching the initiative, more than 1,800 volunteers have already signed up, reflective of the Commonwealth’s world-class health care workforce. To support expedited onboarding of these volunteers, the Department of Public Health has issued an order authorizing the Office of Preparedness and Emergency Management to perform a CORI check on any volunteer who registered through the volunteer portal without a notarized CORI acknowledgement form. The Order requires any entity performing a CORI check pursuant to the Order to implement sufficient compensating controls to reasonably verify an individual’s identity, including inspection of a photographic form of government issued identification via teleconference.


On-Demand Licensing For Health Professionals: To further support the Commonwealth’s health care workforce, the Department of Public Health has issued an order designed to provide on-demand licensing and re-licensing for certain health care professionals. The Order expedites licensing for professionals with licenses in good standing in other states, and professionals who have allowed their Massachusetts licenses to expire within the past 10 years while in good standing. This order applies to a wide range of health professionals: registered nurse, licensed practical nurse, advanced practice registered nurse, dentist, dental hygienist, dental assistant, pharmacist, pharmacy technician, nursing home administrator, physician assistant, respiratory therapist, perfusionist, genetic counselor, community health worker and emergency medical technician.


Expanding Care Capacity: As part of its efforts to expand existing health care capacity, the Administration’s COVID-19 Response Command Center is working with long-term care facilities to establish dedicated skilled nursing facilities to care for individuals infected with COVID-19. The initiative offers an alternative location where individuals who are stable but still need medical care can be transferred to recover, relieving pressure on hospitals and opening up hospital beds for the treatment of patients with the greatest medical need. The transfer of existing residents out of participating facilities will be handled with the utmost care. The Administration has received federal approval from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for this initiative.

The Department of Public Health has issued an order waiving certain MassHealth regulations regarding the transfers and discharge of long-term care facility residents, for the limited purpose of safely transferring and discharging all residents living in a long-term care facility that is intended to be used as a designated COVID-19 facility. The Command Center has worked with the Beaumont Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Center in Worcester to start this effort, which will help bring 300 skilled nursing facility beds online in central Massachusetts. The Command Center will continue to work with long-term care facilities to add care capacity for older adults.


Financial Relief For Care Providers: Governor Baker today issued an order providing the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) administrative flexibility to extend financial relief to providers of critical health care and social services that serve EOHHS clients, including members of MassHealth. The financial relief may be in the form of temporary rate adjustments, supplemental payments, and new rate and payment methodologies that reflect the modified ways services are being delivered. These measures will be subject to the approval of the Secretary of the Executive Office for Administration and Finance. This will allow EOHHS to extend critical financial support to:

  • Providers that are facing extraordinary demand due to the COVID-19 emergency, while, at the same time, have lost significant revenue because they have had to cancel other procedures and appointments;

  • Providers that are necessary to keep vulnerable individuals safe in their homes or residences and out of more acute settings like hospitals; and

  • Human service providers that have been forced to respond to the unanticipated circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic by altering the way they deliver services and the hours and scope of these services.


Shareholder Meeting Requirements: Under Massachusetts law, public companies can permit shareholders and their proxies to participate in annual or special shareholder meetings by remote communication, but they are also required to hold a meeting in a physical space that shareholders can attend in person. Given the challenges of meeting such requirements while non-essential workers are required to stay home and gatherings are limited to 10 people, Governor Baker today issued an order adjusting this meeting requirement. The Governor’s order permits public companies to hold annual or special shareholder meetings completely by means of remote communication, until 60 days after the end of the state of emergency. Additionally, if a public company has already sent written notice to its shareholders of an annual or special meeting to be held in a physical location, this order allows that company to notify its shareholders that the meeting now will be held solely through remote communication without mailing another notice, provided they issue a press release, send email notice where possible, and take other reasonable steps to notify their shareholders of the change.

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