July 24 Biweekly 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. Twice weekly, 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 twice-weekly 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 Federal Agency COVID-19 Guidance for Businesses page. 

 Here is today’s (July 24, 2020) roundup: 

 Medical Response

  • Fallon Joins With Utah Firm to Care for High-Risk Patients – Worcester insurer Fallon Health has partnered with Collective Medical, a Utah-based health technology company, to identify and support high-risk residents across Massachusetts. Collective Health will help Fallon identify those with worse so-called social determinants of health: conditions including socioeconomic status, employment, education, and access to health care. Read more here.  
  • UnitedHealth Group Ensures Easy Access to Care – In light of the need for social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19, UnitedHealth Group has adopted a variety of strategies to aid members and consumers, including waiving costs for testing, expanding telehealth, and providing over $1.5 billion in credits to support patients affected by COVID-19. UnitedHealth Group has also made their mobile mental health app free for all consumers. Read more here.  
  • Seven Hills Foundation to Partner with Upward Health on COVID-19 Program – The Seven Hills Foundation will partner with Upward Health to deliver comprehensive health care services to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) in their homes. The focus of the contract is the prevention, testing, and treatment of COVID-19 for up to 450 individuals with I/DD living in residences operated by Seven Hills Community Services as well as residences managed by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the same region. Data gathered by Upward Health and Seven Hills Foundation will help Massachusetts health officials craft their statewide approach for optimal service delivery practices. 

Economic/Business Continuity Response

  • The Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard University to Work With Colleges on Reopening – The Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard Univerity’s Broad Institute will be supporting colleges and universities as they prepare for students to return to campus. The Institute will provide campus-wide COVID-19 surveillance testing, and is currently finalizing its plan to implement testing strategies and institutions across New York and New England. Read more here 
  • Northeastern University to Test all Boston Students, Faculty, and Staff for COVID-19 – As students, faculty, and staff at Northeastern University begin a phased return to the Boston campus, one of the integral components of ensuring the safety of everyone involved is testing for COVID-19. The university is providing free viral tests for students living on and off the Boston campus, as well as faculty, staff, and other employees, to determine if they are infected with the coronavirus. Samples will be sent to a third-party testing facility and Northeastern’s own Life Sciences Center. Read more here.  

Community Response

  • Health Leads Offers Guidance on Caring for Vulnerable Populations – Nonprofit healthcare organization Health Leads has released guidance on how organizations can work to provide care to Boston’s most vulnerable populations. Health Leads conducted a 115-person survey to identify major gaps in not only healthcare, but food security, mental and substance abuse, and childcare. Health Leads will use their study to provide insight in combatting both COVID-19 and issues exacerbated by the virus and systemic inequalities. Read more here.  

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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