April 14 Daily Round-Up: NEC Members Contribute to COVID-19 Crisis Response

As our region and our nation continue to grapple with the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) pandemic, The New England Council is using our blog as a platform to highlight some of the incredible work our members have undertaken to respond to the outbreak.  Each day, we’ll post a round-up of updates on some of the initiatives underway among Council members throughout the region.  We are also sharing these updates via our social media, and encourage our members to share with us any information on their efforts so that we can be sure to include them in these daily round-ups.

You can find all the Council’s information and resources related to the crisis in the special COVID-19 section of our website.  This includes our COVID-19 Virtual Events Calendar, which provides information on upcoming COVID-19 Congressional town halls and webinars presented by NEC members, as well as our newly-released Federal Agency COVID-19 Guidance for Businesses page.

Here is today’s (April 14, 2020) roundup:

Medical Response

  • Brigham and Women’s Hospital Develops Reusable Face Shields – To address the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE), Brigham and Women’s Hospital has developed a face mask that can be reused to protect its workers. Shields are made with the hospital’s 3-D printer, which uses design plans the hospital plans to share with organizations locally or nationally who need them. CBS has more.
  • UMass Researchers Producing Essential Materials for Testing – A volunteer team at the University of Massachusetts (UMass) Amherst is preparing a critical solution for COVID-19 testing. The solution, a sterile combination needed to transport and conduct the tests, is in short supply in Massachusetts after supply chains from Italy fell short. The state has requested 10,000 vials a week for healthcare systems in the area to alleviate the effects of the shortage. WWLP
  • P&G Producing Face Shields at Boston Plant – At its plant in South Boston, P&G Gillette is—for the first time since World War II—producing supplies other than shaving products, making face shields to aid Massachusetts in its response to COVID-19. The factory has already produced 10,000 shields, and plans to contribute at least 100,000 total in addition to P&G’s earlier support to response efforts. The Boston Globe

Economic/Business Continuity Response

  • Fidelity Investments Increases Hiring Across Country – Fidelity Investments is planning to accelerate the hiring of 2,000 employees across the country to meet increased demand from its customers. The increase in onboarding comes after the company announced more employee support measures. The Boston Globe has more.
  • National Fire Protection Association Releases Whitepaper for Healthcare Providers – With the increasing prevalence of overflow treatment centers, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has released a new guidance document on how to maintain fire safety and compliance measures in temporary facilities. The document is part of an ongoing effort by NFPA to encourage the necessary preventative measures to allow essential operations to continue safely. Read more in Firehouse.

Community Response

  • Salem State University Offers Campus for Response EffortsSalem State University has offered it residence halls and gymnasium to help the city’s response to the coronavirus outbreak. The space will be used for individuals, including healthcare workers and recently discharged patients, who wish to isolate themselves from their families. Read more form WHDH.
  • Tufts University Families Donate 31,000 Masks to Tufts Medical Center – Parents and students at Tufts University have come together to donate 31,000 KN95 respirator masks to Tufts Medical Center from the school community. The group, consisting of alumni, students, and parents from multiple countries, was also able to donate surgical masks, goggles, and medical gowns to the hospital’s supplies. The Boston Business Journal has more.

Stay tuned for more updates each day, and follow us on Twitter for more frequent updates on how Council members are contributing to the response to this global health crisis.

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