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  • November 30, 2021 - GBH

    Health officials in Brockton and Worcester say they are on high alert and bracing to handle the first cases of the omicron variant of the coronavirus, should it spread to Massachusetts.

    Scientists and public health experts are still learning about the variant's potential impact, from how easily it spreads to whether it makes people more severely ill than other variants. Until they know more, city officials are encouraging people to follow the same precautions as earlier stages in the pandemic: wear a mask, wash your hands, maintain distance in public spaces and get vaccinated.

  • November 30, 2021 - Spectrum News

    WORCESTER, Mass. - A new variant of COVID-19 discovered in South Africa is spreading and a local doctor says there are a number of mutations in this one and it could become the primary variant going forward.

    Omicron has led at least 44 countries including the U.S. to impose travel restrictions from several African countries. There are currently no known cases in the U.S., but UMass Memorial Health internal medicine specialist, Dr. Robert Klugman, says there's a high chance there will be.

  • November 29, 2021 - WCVB

    New policies to combat an increasing number of hospital patients go into effect Monday.

    Some surgeries could be put on hold as rising COVID-19 cases put a strain on local hospitals.

  • November 29, 2021 - WCVB

    BOSTON — Health officials say it appears the omicron variant is more contagious, but it’s unclear if it will result in more severe illness.

    And it’s not yet clear how the current vaccines hold up against it.

  • November 27, 2021 - Fierce Healthcare

    Massachusetts is requiring hospitals and health systems to reduce non-urgent scheduled surgical procedures. But the top reason isn't a surge of COVID-19 hospitalizations.

    The state’s public health department released guidance this week to hospitals that aims to conserve inpatient hospital capacity, with a major staffing shortage and a wave of non-COVID-19 care key drivers of the decision.

  • November 27, 2021 - Boston Herald

    Coronavirus booster shots are now authorized for everyone 18 years and older and can be given six months after mRNA vaccines and two months after a Johnson & Johnson shot.

  • November 23, 2021 - Boston Herald

    Massachusetts hospitals, which are once again facing critical staffing and bed shortages, will soon be limiting non-essential pre-scheduled procedures to preserve resources and capacity.

    “The current strain on hospital capacity is due to longer than average hospital stays and significant workforce shortages, separate and apart from the challenges brought on by COVID,” said Secretary of Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders in a statement.

  • November 23, 2021 - Boston Globe

    The Baker administration on Tuesday ordered Massachusetts hospitals, already teeming with patients who delayed care during the early days of the pandemic, to reduce nonurgent surgeries to help manage a potential winter rush of people sick with respiratory illnesses, including the flu and COVID-19.

    The order comes as the coronavirus is again causing a surge of infections throughout New England with the onset of cold weather, with Massachusetts and Connecticut experiencing the steepest rise in cases in the country.

  • November 23, 2021 - Boston.com

    Amid an uptick in COVID-19 hospitalizations headed into the holidays, Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration is ordering Massachusetts hospitals with limited bed capacity to cut back on non-urgent, scheduled procedures.

    However, officials say the reason isn’t the recent increase in COVID-19 patients.

  • November 22, 2021 - Boston Globe

    WORCESTER — In the bay outside the crowded emergency department of UMass Memorial Medical Center, the ambulances keep coming.

    Just inside the doors, a pair of paramedics wait with their patient, an elderly woman on a stretcher.

  • November 22, 2021 - Worcester Business Journal

    A perfect storm is brewing in the world of medicine, as the wave of an aging population collides with a shortfall of future surgeons.

    Yet, the vascular surgery specialty in Central Massachusetts is breaking this troubling trend with technological innovation.

  • November 21, 2021 - Trinidad Guardian

    Countries in the Northern Hemisphere are facing an unpredictable winter as COVID-19 continues to spread during the flu season, experts have warned.

    Last year, when governments recommended a range of protective measures such as mask-wearing, social distancing and lockdowns to slow COVID-19 infections, the number of influenza cases dropped dramatically compared with the seasonal average.

  • November 20, 2021 - Worcester Business Journal

    The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed a multitude of problems long lingering in the healthcare system: staffing shortages, racial inequities, increasing mental health needs, lack of access, lack of funding, rising costs, mistrust in the medical establishment. And there are concerns the system is increasingly being structured to limit exposure for insurers, rather than primarily serving the patients or providers. The sheer number of issues is daunting, yet areas can be addressed without breaking the bank.

  • November 19, 2021 - Reuters

    Nov 19 (Reuters) - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Friday authorized booster doses of COVID-19 vaccines for all adults six months after having been fully vaccinated with the shots from either Pfizer Inc (PFE.N) and partner BioNTech SE or Moderna Inc (MRNA.O).

  • November 18, 2021 - Bloomberg Baystate Business

    Dr. Eric Dickson, CEO of UMass Memorial Health in Worcester, on the rise in Covid cases and hospitalizations.

  • November 18, 2021 - Spectrum News

    RUTLAND, Mass. - COVID-19 vaccination eligibility is expanding in Massachusetts. Anyone 18 and older can now receive a booster shot. Meanwhile, younger kids are getting their first doses of the vaccine. 

    Nine-year old Isaac Tsai is getting his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. “It means I’ll be more safe from the coronavirus," Issac, who received the Pfizer vaccine, said. 

  • November 12, 2021 - Boston Globe

    Massachusetts hospitals continue to face bed space issues this fall as a worrisome winter looms, the head of the state hospital association said Friday.

    “Capacity remains a serious challenge within hospitals and ICUs across Massachusetts, and they are each preparing for what will likely be yet another difficult winter,” said Steve Walsh, president and chief executive of the Massachusetts Health & Hospital Association.

  • November 11, 2021 - Wicked Local

    Picture this: You're critically ill, perhaps dying, and your nearby hospital doesn't have any open beds in its intensive care unit.

    You're taken to the sky in a medical helicopter, as paramedics and dispatchers search for an available ICU bed on the ground – in a health care system stressed by staffing shortages and hammered by COVID-19.

  • November 9, 2021 - Boston Business Journal

    Capacity challenges and workforce issues have created unprecedented strain on the state's hospitals.

  • November 9, 2021 - Boston Business Journal

    Legislators are preparing a bill that would make it harder for large health systems to expand to the suburbs, a proposal that several hospital leaders applauded as a promising first step to shoring up the state’s most vulnerable institutions.

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