COVID-19 Response Fund
As you know, people experiencing homelessness are extraordinarily vulnerable to viruses such as this COVID-19, and given the crowded conditions in which they live, transmission of the illness can happen quickly. Dr. Jessie Gaeta, CEO Barry Bock, Dr. Jim O’Connell, Dr. Denise De Las Nueces and our other medical leadership have been working thoughtfully, diligently and 24/7 with our shelter partners, hospitals, the City, and the State to lead and undertake a comprehensive and multi-faceted response. Here’s how BHCHP has responded to COVID-19 over the past year:
- Set up and operated the half of Boston Hope dedicated to treating individuals who experience homelessness and were COVID positive. Boston Hope was the field hospital located at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center. BHCHP was in charge of 500 beds for COVID-19 positive unsheltered patients. We partnered with Mass General Brigham, the city, and the state.
- Transformed a floor of our 24/7 Barbara McInnis House respite program into a 52-bed COVID-19 unit, and continue to care for COVID positive patients, reducing the density at area hospitals.
- Designed and operated a 38-bed medical tent to stem the spread of the virus and care for people who have no place to isolate or quarantine while awaiting test results. The tent hospital is now closed, thanks to our and our partners’ success in controlling the spread of infection. BHCHP also operated an additional 80 bed filed hospital for 10 weeks at the height of the pandemic in our community.
- Designed and continue to staff robust universal and surveillance testing in area shelters along with contact tracing.
- Continue to operate a 24/7 phone hotline for shelter partners seeking advice on anything COVID-19 related.
- Continue to serve as advisors to other organizations on infection control, coronavirus testing and treatment, and building a COVID-19 system of care.