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Wednesday, November 25, 2020

麻州5080萬元2補助計畫有逾萬企業申請 恐僧多粥少

             (Boston Orange 編譯)新冠病毒疫情對社會民生的影響到底有多嚴重?從麻州州長查理貝克(Charlie Baker)日前經由「麻州成長資本法人團體(Massachusetts Growth Capital Corp.,)」推出的2項共5080萬元補助計畫,竟然收到超過1萬宗申請案,就或可略見端倪。

            2項補助計畫旨在幫助小企業渡過新冠病毒(COVID-19)大流行這難關,如今申請件數這麼多,以州政府所準備的款項,恐難避免出現粥少僧多境況。

            由聯邦經費資助的這2項補助計畫,其中有4000萬元預定發75000元給員工50人以下的小企業,另有1080萬元要發25000元給員工5人以下,企業主收入低於平均數的小公司。

            「麻州成長資本」上星期停止接受申請時,已收到共1萬多宗申請案,其中大約37%是申請員工少於5人的補助項目,也有幾家企業同時申請了兩項補助計畫。

            大致來說,受新冠病毒大流行影響最大的行業,也是最多申請案件所屬行業,包括餐館,美容店,個人護理,以及教育和個人服務等行業。

            到底有多少申請案件能夠成功申請,目前還不清楚。很可能的是有很多申請案會被拒絕。州政府人員希望12月時可以決定通過那些申請案。

            麻州社區發展協會執行長Joe Kriesberg表示,如果所有申請者都獲發最高額補助,大約有1000家企業可拿到補助款。他估計得到補助的企業不會超過2000家。

            一旦麻州參眾議會版本的本會計年度預算案下星期落實了,這兩項補助計畫可能獲得額外經費挹注。查理貝克已要求加倍撥給該經費。

            目前有40多家小企業支持團體協助麻州成長資本推廣這一補助計畫,尤其是向經營企業,英語說得不好,或完全不會說英語的有色人種宣傳。這樣的小企業估計有880家。

            這補助計畫早在1022日就推出了,「支持地方計畫(Local Initiative Support Corp)」執行主任Karen Kelleher表示,羅爾市的一家企業告訴他,每50家企業大概只有1家知道這補助項目。

            大波士頓商會執行長Jim Rooney表示,申請者過多彰顯了麻州,以及全美都需要聯邦政府早日一致行動,著手下一波紓困。

波士頓僑教中心: 12/1起入境台灣需出示COVID-19檢驗報告

 


Happy Thanksgiving, Boston!

 

CITY of BOSTON

Happy Thanksgiving, Boston!

This Thanksgiving is unlike any we’ve seen in our lifetimes. As cases of COVID-19 increase in the City, across the Commonwealth, and across the United States, we’re asking everyone to take necessary steps to prevent the spread of this virus as we enter a critical period in the pandemic. The safest way to celebrate Thanksgiving is at home with the people in your household. Gathering with family and friends who do not live with you can increase the chances of getting or spreading COVID-19.

 

If you may have COVID-19, are not feeling well, or have been exposed to the virus, you should stay home and not host or participate in any in-person gatherings. If you are at an increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19, such as older adults or those with certain medical conditions, you should also not take part in any in-person gatherings.

Everyone can make Thanksgiving safer this year

Remember, celebrating at home with people you live with is the safest option this year. If you are planning on gathering with family outside your household or traveling, we urge extreme caution. Getting tested does not protect you from infection. It will still be a higher risk activity, and we ask that you refrain from engaging in this activity if possible.

 

Holding a gathering?

  • Keep it small and limit the number of guests. In Boston, indoor gatherings should be 10 people or less.
  • Ask guests to wear a mask unless eating and drinking, and stay 6 feet apart when possible.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and items between use.
  • Ask guests to avoid going in and out of areas where food is being prepared and handled, like the kitchen.
  • Do not share food, drink, or any utensils.
  • Have guests bring their own food and drink.
  • Avoid any self-serve food or drink options, such as buffets, potlucks, or drink stations.

Keep in mind:

  • If sharing food, have one person (wearing a face mask and gloves) serve food and use single-use options and disposable items, like plastic food containers, plates, and utensils.
  • Consider small seating table arrangements in multiple rooms with plenty of spacing instead of a large family table.
  • Improve ventilation by opening windows and doors.
  • For 14 days before and after holiday gatherings, minimize contact with other people. Leave home only for essential services like going to work, buying groceries, and appointments with doctors.

Are you planning to travel?

As a reminder, we strongly advise against traveling for Thanksgiving, which may increase your chances of getting and spreading COVID-19. Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others this year. If you must travel:

  • Know the higher-risk states and what the Massachusetts travel order means for you when you return home. All visitors entering Massachusetts, including returning residents, are required to quarantine for 14 days or produce a negative COVID-19 test result that has been administered up to 72-hours before your arrival in Massachusetts.
  • Wear a face covering at all times in public.
  • Stay 6 feet apart from anyone who is not in your household.
  • Get a flu shot before traveling, if you have not already.
  • Wash your hands often or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your mask, eyes, nose, and mouth.

Safe alternatives for celebrating Thanksgiving

Looking for safer, alternative, or virtual ways to celebrate the holiday? The safest celebrations are with people from your household, or ones held outdoors that allow for safety measures.

 

Lower-risk activities:

  • Having a small Thanksgiving dinner with only people who live in your household.
  • Hosting a virtual dinner with extended family and friends.
  • Hosting a Thanksgiving meal outdoors, if possible.
  • Taking a walk with extended family while wearing a mask and staying 6 feet apart.
  • Preparing traditional recipes for family and neighbors. Deliver them in a way that doesn't involve contact with others.

Higher-risk activities:

  • Attending or hosting indoor gatherings with people from outside your home.
  • Sharing food and drinks.
  • Shaking hands and hugging. Wave and verbally greet others instead.
  • Singing, dancing, and shouting. These activities increase your chances of catching COVID-19 through the air.

 

Black Friday shopping?

Black Friday and Small Business Saturday are some of the biggest shopping days of the year. Take steps to stay safe:

  • Always wear a face covering in public.
  • Stay 6 feet apart from others.
  • Avoid crowds and crowded places.
  • Bring an alcohol-based hand sanitizer and wash your hands often.

Consider alternative, safer options:

  • Shop online
  • Use contactless services, like curbside pick-up
  • Shop in open air markets, staying 6 feet away from others and wearing a mask

 

Get the COVID-19 test!

As you would whenever you participate in any kind of gathering, consider getting tested for COVID-19. The City of Boston partners with community health centers, hospitals, and pharmacies to increase access to COVID-19 testing for Boston residents.

As a reminder, we have over 30 testing sites across the City, as well as two mobile testing sites currently at Central Square Park in East Boston and at Jubilee Christian Church in Mattapan. Find a site near you.

You can read more about Thanksgiving guidance on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. For more information on Boston's response to COVID-19, please visit our COVID-19 website.

Do you have time for a quick survey?

We are working to improve the Boston Public Health Commission website and we would love to hear from you! If you have a few minutes, please take our survey about the site.

AG HEALEY OFFERS GUIDANCE ON DONATING TO CHARITIES AHEAD OF GIVING TUESDAY AND AMID ONGOING COVID-19 PANDEMIC

 AG Healey Offers Guidance on Donating to Charities Ahead of Giving Tuesday AND AMID ONGOING COVID-19 PANDEMIC

Releases Bulletin About Professional Solicitation in Massachusetts

BOSTON — In anticipation of “Giving Tuesday” and the upcoming holiday season, and as people across the state continue to struggle amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Attorney General Maura Healey advises residents to make informed decisions when donating to charities. The AG’s Office released a new bulletin showing that only 47 percent of the funds that professional solicitors raised on behalf of charities were transferred to charitable organizations in 2019. More than half of charitable contributions collected were retained by the professional solicitors.

 

“Massachusetts charities are providing critical services and resources to individuals and communities during a challenging time as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact our state,” said AG Healey. “If you are in a position to give, be sure to do your research and make informed decisions about your giving in order to maximize the impact of your donation.”

Charitable organizations sometimes pay professional solicitors to solicit donations from the public, and solicitors are required by statute to register with the AG’s Office. Conventional professional solicitors fundraise through phone, mail and door-to-door campaigns. The 2019 Professional Solicitor Bulletin outlines the financial results conventional solicitors and charities report from campaigns conducted in Massachusetts.

In calendar year 2019, conventional professional solicitors collected more than $127 million in Massachusetts. While the amount kept by professional solicitors varied widely among solicitors, only approximately $60.2 million ended up with the actual charities. The 2019 report is consistent with campaign reports from the last five years, in which professional solicitors transferred less than 50 percent of funds they raised to charities. The 2019 report reflects a slight increase over 2018, when an average of 45 percent of every dollar that a professional solicitor raised went to charities.

The AG’s Office encourages potential donors to consider the following points when they are contacted by a professional solicitor:

 

  • Is the solicitor calling your home a volunteer or a professional fundraiser?
  • How much of every dollar donated will go to the charity?
  • Confirm the charity’s name and the services it offers.

 

Professional solicitors are required by law to disclose certain information when asked and may not mislead prospective donors or misrepresent facts. While the most effective means of preventing fraud is an educated donating public, the AG’s Office has a variety of tools to address deceptive practices.

 

The AG’s Office maintains annual financial reports from charities and professional solicitors that operate in the Commonwealth, which are available for public inspection online.

For additional tips on donating, consumers may also review our Giving Wisely Advisory and the Donating Dos and Don’ts: A Guide to Charitable Giving.

 

            In April 2020, AG Healey sent out an advisory to residents urging them to make informed decisions when specifically donating to charities that support people affected by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. AG Healey also has information about COVID-19 relief efforts that are sponsored by charities registered and in compliance with the AG’s Office.

 

Individuals with inquiries or complaints about charitable solicitations should call the Attorney General’s Non-Profit Organizations/Public Charities Division at 617-963-2101, or access the complaint form online.

中華頤養院參與協調全美頤養院防治COVID-19培訓

馬薩諸塞州長者護理協會和希伯來老人院在全國范圍內領導
300所療養院發起對抗COVID-19感染的倡議

新英格蘭社區醫療服務和中華頤養院Quincy Point

協調大波士頓地區的工作 

馬薩諸塞州長者護理協會和希伯來長者生活正在合作開展一項全國性培訓計劃,以幫助防止COVID-19在地區的療養院中傳播,並為員工提供準備和裝備,以便他們可以更好地保護民和自己。這是打COVID-19的全國重要舉措。

該計劃是國家護理之家COVID-19行動網絡的一部分,該網絡由聯邦醫療研究與質量局(AHRQ)與醫療改善研究所(IHI)和ECHO項目合作提供支持。馬薩諸塞州長者護理協會和希伯來長者生活以正式的“Hub”份參加了該網絡,負責對馬薩諸塞州的療養院進行感染控制培訓。

我們很高興能有300個療養院加入馬薩諸塞州長者護理院和希伯來長者生活,以支持國家護理院COVID-19網絡。我們將護理院工作人員,長期護理領導者,醫生以及感染控制和老年病學專家聚集在一起共享最佳實踐並建立療養院在遏制病毒傳播方面取得的巨大進步,療養院及其員工一直處於這一流行病的最前線,並努力為病患提供專業,優質,富有同情心的護理他們關心的弱勢群體。馬薩諸塞長者級護理協會主席塔拉·格雷戈里奧(Tara Gregorio說。 提供這種額外的支持將加強我們的感染控制工作。

醫學博士,Hinda和亞瑟·馬庫斯(Arthur Marcus)衰老研究所所長,希伯來大學SeniorLife首席學術官,醫學博士Lewis A. Lipsitz說:COVID-19春季熱潮中受到嚴重打擊的療養院繼續努力,以阻止COVID-19的傳播。儘管今年秋天的病例有所增加,但最近的報告表明,這種擴散主要發生在家庭中,而不是療養院或其他長者生活設施中。這顯示出令人鼓舞的進展。療養院需要保持警惕,不斷學習降低風險並保護患者和員工的方法。與馬薩諸塞州長者護理協會一起,在該州的療養院和學術醫療中心,我們期待在英聯邦建立一個學習社區,我們在彼此之間學習如何防止這種破壞性病毒在脆弱的長期護理人群中傳播。

這300個護理設施將分為幾組,每組由臨床醫生和療養院操作員領導。作為指定的培訓中心,馬薩諸塞州COVID-19感染控制中心還將為遇到COVID-19突然增加的任何療養院提供快速響應諮詢。

該計劃有六個目標: 

·       防止病毒進入療養院。
·       及早發現院民和員工是否受到感染。
·       防止病毒傳播給工作人員,院民和訪客。
·       為患有輕度和無症狀病例的民提供安全和適當的護理。
·       確保員工具備實施最佳實踐安全措施以保護院民和自身的知識,技能和信心。
·       減少院民,家庭和員工的社會隔離。

為此,國家療養院COVID-19行動網絡秉承“一起教,一起學”的理念,在該理念中,療養院參與者從知名專家那裡獲得專業知識,又要向同行學習。馬薩諸塞州COVID-19感染控制中心將在9個同期隊列中與療養院團隊一起進行16次虛擬學習課程。每次會議均設計為互動式的,旨在聆聽療養院工作人員所面臨的挑戰並提供切實可行的解決方案。每節課將包括一個簡短的講座或課程,以及案例演示和討論,然後是一個問答論壇。

“如果這種病毒告訴我們的是一件事,那就是它具有極強的傳染性,直到我們擁有廣泛可用的經過驗證的疫苗後,它才能得到控制。針對COVID-19的最佳防禦方法是預防並採取適當而一致的預防措施。” 新英格蘭社區醫療服務公司合夥人Asif Merchant醫師表示。 “隨著我們對COVID-19及其不同菌株的了解越來越多,當務之急是我們必須領先並減輕任何可能擴散到我們的長期護理機構中的潛能。該計劃將有助於我們努力保護在療養院居住的人和工作人員。”

“我們很榮幸能與馬薩諸塞州長者護理協會和希伯來長者生活一起參與該計劃。保護我們的院民和員工是第一要務,該計劃將使療養院社區提供者分享最佳做法,這將有助於為我們提供必要的和院民應得的護理。在整個大流行中,中華頤養院成功地確保了院民和員工的安全,我們非常高興與其他提供者社區分享我們的成功。” 中華頤養院總裁兼首席執行官Bill Graves說道。

邀請所有符合Medicare和Medicaid資格的療養院參加此免費的自願性計劃。國家療養院COVID-19行動網絡將向每個機構提供6,000美元的津貼,以成功完成該計劃,並為參與人員提供結業證書。有興趣參加或對參加有疑問的療養院,請通過 JChen@maseniorcare.org 與Jennifer Chen聯繫。

MASSACHUSETTS SENIOR CARE ASSOCIATION AND HEBREW SENIORLIFE TO LEAD 300 NURSING HOMES IN NATIONWIDE INITIATIVE TO FIGHT COVID-19 INFECTION IN NURSING HOMES 

NEW ENGLAND COMMUNITY MEDICAL SERVICES AND SOUTH COVE MANOR AT QUINCY POINT TO COORDINATE EFFORT IN GREATER BOSTON AREA 

Massachusetts Senior Care Association and Hebrew SeniorLife are collaborating in a nationwide training program to help keep COVID-19 from spreading in area nursing homes and to prepare and equip staff so that they can better protect residents and themselves. This is an essential nationwide initiative in the fight against COVID-19.

The program is part of the National Nursing Home COVID-19 Action Network supported by the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) in collaboration with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) and Project ECHO. Massachusetts Senior Care Association and Hebrew SeniorLife are participating in the Network as an official “Hub,” responsible for training nursing homes across Massachusetts in infection control. 

"We are pleased to have 300 nursing homes join Massachusetts Senior Care and Hebrew SeniorLife for the National Nursing Home COVID-19 Network. We are bringing together nursing home staff, leaders in long-term care, physicians, and experts in infection control and gerontology to share best practices and build upon the great progress nursing homes have made in containing the spread of the virus. Nursing homes and their staff have been on the frontlines of this pandemic and have worked diligently to provide professional, high quality, compassionate care to the vulnerable population they care for," said Tara Gregorio, President, Massachusetts Senior Care Association. "Bringing this kind of additional support will enhance our infection control efforts."

Lewis A. Lipsitz, M.D., Director, Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research & Chief Academic Officer, Hebrew SeniorLife, said, “Nursing homes, which were particularly hit hard during the spring surge of COVID-19, continue to work hard to stop the spread of COVID-19. While there has been an increase in cases this fall, recent reports indicate the spread is primarily in households, not nursing homes or other senior living facilities. This shows promising progress. Nursing homes need to remain ever vigilant, ever learning about ways to reduce risk and protect their patients and staff. Together with the Massachusetts Senior Care Association, the State’s nursing homes, and academic medical centers, we look forward to building a learning community in the Commonwealth in which we learn from each other how to prevent the entry and spread of this devastating virus in our vulnerable long-term care population.”  

The 300 nursing facilities will be cohorted into groups, each led by a clinician and a nursing home operator. As a designated training center, the Massachusetts COVID-19 Infection Control Hub will also provide rapid response consultation for any nursing home that experiences a sudden increase in COVID-19.

This program has six goals:

·       Keep the virus from entering nursing homes.

·       Find out early if residents and staff have been infected.

·       Prevent the spread of the virus to staff, residents, and visitors.

·       Provide safe and appropriate care to residents with mild and asymptomatic cases.

·       Ensure staff have the knowledge, skills, and confidence to implement best-practice safety measures to protect residents and themselves.

·       Reduce social isolation for residents, families, and staff.

To do this, the National Nursing Home COVID-19 Action Network embraces an “all teach, all learn” philosophy in which nursing home participants both receive expertise from renowned experts and learn from their peers. The Massachusetts COVID-19 Infection Control Hub will lead 16 virtual learning sessions with nursing home teams in nine simultaneous cohorts. Each session is designed to be interactive—to hear from nursing home staff about the challenges they are facing and provide practical solutions. Each session will include a brief lecture or lesson paired with case presentations and discussion, followed by a Q&A forum.

"If there's one thing this virus has taught us, is that it is highly contagious and will not be under control until we have a proven vaccine that is widely available. The best defense against COVID-19 is prevention and taking appropriate and consistent precautions "said Asif Merchant, MD, Partners at New England Community Medical Services.  "As we learn more about COVID-19 and its varying strains, it's imperative that we stay ahead of, and mitigate, any potential spread into our long-term care facilities. This program will help our efforts to protect individuals who live and work in nursing homes."

"We are proud to participate in this initiative with Mass Senior Care and Hebrew SeniorLife. Protecting our residents and staff is the number one priority, and this initiative will allow the nursing home provider community to share best practices which will help provide the necessary care our residents deserve. South Cove Manor has been successful in keeping our residents and staff safe throughout this pandemic, and we are more than happy to share our success with the rest of the provider community," said Bill Graves, President and CEO, South Cove Manor at Quincy Point.

All Medicare and Medicaid eligible nursing homes are invited to join this free, voluntary program. The National Nursing Home COVID-19 Action Network will provide a $6,000 stipend to each facility for successful completion of the program and a certificate of completion for participating individuals. Nursing homes interested in participating or have questions regarding enrollment, can please contact Jennifer Chen at JChen@maseniorcare.org.