Hospitals & Health Systems Continuing to Require Masks for Visitors & Staff as Required by Federal Regulations

 

While the number of New Hampshire residents who are vaccinated against COVID-19 continues to rise and active cases continues to fall, we still need to remain vigilant in protecting our most vulnerable patients who are in hospitals getting treated for their illness by wearing masks at all times when in those healthcare facilities.

 

Federal regulatory requirements from both the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) state that healthcare settings must require masks be worn by both visitors and staff so that they can ensure the safety of their patients, employees and visitors.  Hospitals and health systems across the state are following these necessary protocols as required as part of their prevention efforts to mitigate any exposure to COVID-19.

 

“Our actions are critical to stopping the spread of COVID-19, and we must all remain vigilant and continue taking steps to mitigate the spread of the virus,” stated Steve Ahnen, president of the New Hampshire Hospital Association. “If you have loved ones that you are visiting in a healthcare setting, or if you need to seek care yourself, hospitals and health systems across the state will continue to ensure the safest environment possible for patients, visitors, and staff by requiring masks.”

 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have continued to highlight the efficacy of wearing masks in slowing the community transmission of COVID-19, in conjunction with other prevention measures that we have been following, such as avoiding large crowds, staying 6 feet apart from anyone outside your household, practicing frequent handwashing and getting the COVID-19 vaccine.  We know these measures are proven to reduce the risk of community transmission and encourage all to continue following these protocols.

 

Wearing masks is one of the most effective tools in preventing the spread of COVID-19 and the federal regulations requiring them within healthcare settings ensures that the safety of both patients and visitors remains the top priority. 

 

“We all want to get back to doing the things we‘ve missed out on over the past year, but we need to continue to protect and provide the safest care possible to those we love, so please follow the directions given to you when you enter any hospital or healthcare setting, which will include mask wearing” said Ahnen.

 

 

 

 

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State Hospital Associations Highlight Need for Blood Donations

 

Hospitals and health systems across New England are facing a critical shortage of all blood types and are seeking volunteer donors and host sites.  Every donation helps save a life and is essential to ensuring community health.  Donating blood takes only about an hour of your time but to someone who needs blood, it gives them the gift of time by saving their life through your donation. 

 

Transfusions made possible by blood donations are a critical aspect of the lifesaving care that hospitals and health systems provide every day.  Blood donations save millions of lives and ensure that hospitals can provide the level of care their patients and communities depend on when they need it most.  The need for blood is universal, but access to blood for all those who need it is not.

 

“We are experiencing such significant blood shortages that many of our hospitals are down to critical levels,” said Steve Ahnen, president of the New Hampshire Hospital Association.  “We continue to collaborate with our American Red Cross partners and encourage every Granite Stater who is able to donate blood to do so soon so that we can increase blood supplies across the state.”

 

“Summertime is the most challenging time for the blood supply in a normal year,” said Steven Michaud, president of the Maine Hospital Association.  “This past year has been anything but normal and it has added even more strain on an already scarce resource.  We plead with everyone to give as soon as they are able and save a life.” 

 

“People in communities across Massachusetts continue to ask what they can do to support our healthcare providers as they recover from the pandemic. Right now, the answer is simply to donate blood,” said Steve Walsh, president and CEO of the Massachusetts Health & Hospital Association. “Giving blood is a simple but powerful way to help your local healthcare organizations continue serving every patient in need.”

 

“Vermonters step up to meet every challenge we face, especially during the pandemic and I know this will be no different,” said Devon Green, Vice President of Government Relations at the Vermont Association of Hospitals and Health Systems. “The need for life-saving blood knows no geographical border and we must work together to meet this critical need. If you are able, please give blood as soon as you can.”

 

By donating blood, you could be the difference in life-saving treatment so please be a patient’s hero and schedule an appointment to donate blood today at https://www.redcross.org.  To learn more about ways to donate blood and host blood drives, visit the American Red Cross of Northern New England online at www.redcross.org/nne or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.

 

Save a life and donate blood today.

 

 

New Hampshire is facing a critical shortage of all blood types and is seeking volunteer donors and host sites.  Every donation helps save a life and is essential to ensuring community health.  Donating blood takes only about an hour of your time but to someone who needs blood, it gives them the gift of time by saving their life through your donation. 

 

If you donate blood you can help be the difference in life-saving treatment so please be a patient’s hero and schedule an appointment to donate blood today.  You can learn more about ways to donate blood and host blood drives by visiting the American Red Cross of Northern New England online at https://www.redcross.org/local/me-nh-vt.html or by calling them at (603) 225-6697.  Save a life and donate blood today.

 

 

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The emergency department (ED) boarding crisis is one that has plagued the state and our most vulnerable citizens for far too long.  It is a symptom of a much broader problem of not having adequate capacity across our entire mental health care system--from outpatient services, crisis services, acute inpatient services, transitional housing and other community support services that support patients no longer in crisis.  

This week’s ruling by the New Hampshire Supreme Court has made it very clear that this problem must be resolved now.  All parties should see this as an opportunity to sit at the table together and formulate both short and long-term solutions so that patients suffering an acute psychiatric illness are able to get the care they need.  Hospitals have long partnered with the State on many important public health issues, including the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and we look forward to doing so yet again.

 

We are pleased with the Supreme Court's decision.  The Court clearly affirmed that when a patient is experiencing a mental health crisis, and receives an Involuntary Emergency Admission designation, then that patient should be immediately transferred to the appropriate setting to receive the specialized care and due process that they need and deserve.

 

We will continue working with state leaders to ensure this ruling is carried out, and that we are meeting the needs of patients experiencing mental health crises, as well as their families.

 

Inspiring Hope through Healing

 

Every year, National Hospital Week provides us an opportunity to highlight our hospitals, health systems and health care workers and the innovative ways they are supporting the needs of their community members and demonstrating their mission of putting every patient’s health first.

 

This year, as our frontline healthcare workers continue to battle the COVID-19 pandemic and the unprecedented challenges it has presented, we are reminded even more so of their selfless bravery and tireless efforts of keeping their communities safe and healthy.

 

Every day, New Hampshire hospitals and health systems are Inspiring Hope through Healing by exemplifying the Blue and White H of health, healing and hope, and the promise it makes to its community, especially during these challenging times.

 

As we continue to make our way through this public health crisis, we remain inspired by the dedication of our hospitals as they tirelessly meet the challenges of their COVID-19 response and recovery.  From the physicians and nurses on the front lines, to the administrative, nutrition, facility and other staff supporting their institutions during this unprecedented time, it is our privilege to extend our deepest appreciation to New Hampshire’s hospitals and all of our healthcare heroes for their perseverance, courage and strength in the fight against COVID-19.

 

In honor of National Hospital Week 2021 (May 9-15), the American Hospital Association (AHA) collaborated with Musicians On Call, (MOC), a nonprofit organization that delivers the healing power of music, to release an original song and video inspired by the words of health care workers honoring their work and sacrifices during the COVID-19 pandemic. To all those working in America’s hospitals and health systems, thank you!

Listen to “Worth Fighting For" here or download on the below platforms.

Every year during National Nurses Week, May 6th – May 12th, we highlight our nurses in hospitals and health systems across the state for their compassion and dedication to their patients and communities.  This year, we take the opportunity to thank them for the selflessness and bravery with which they have continued to support New Hampshire residents through the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Nurses have been on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic in New Hampshire’s hospitals for more than a year, supporting their institutions through their response and recovery while continuing to provide the same compassionate, safe care on which they pride themselves.  They are true heroes during these incredibly challenging times, fighting the pandemic every day with bravery and courage despite the danger to themselves to care for their patients in need.

On National Nurses Day and every day, we celebrate their ability to exemplify the Blue and White H of health, healing and hope, and the promise it makes on behalf of the institution it represents to its community.

As frontline superheroes, our nurses have demonstrated their unbelievable capacity to serve their patients, remaining confident and strong while empowering their colleagues through innovation, leadership and excellence.   And while the COVID-19 public health crisis has forever changed the lives of so many, nurses continue to be on the front lines, demonstrating their unwavering resolve, heroic sacrifice and absolute commitment to delivering the critical care patients need and deserve. Ahegao Hentai https://hentai-moon.com/categories/ahegao/ videos ahegao whatch online. 

To every nurse throughout our state and beyond, we remain forever inspired by your courage, selflessness and perseverance.   We are forever grateful, and we thank you for your dedication to keeping your community healthy, and for the dedication, compassion and empathy you provide to your patients every day.

 

 

 

No doubt Granite State residents are ready to put the COVID-19 pandemic in the rearview mirror.  This past year has been one of the most challenging of our lives, and we all want to return to a sense of normalcy and be able to get out and do the things we want to do—hug loved ones we haven’t seen in person for over a year; visit our family, friends and others; go shopping, out to eat at a restaurant or see a movie with friends; travel; and so much more. With the successful advent of COVID-19 vaccines, we’re getting closer by the day.  But we’re not there yet and we need to continue to follow all of the common-sense public health and safety protocols that we know are successful in helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19:  wear a mask, maintain physical distance, wash our hands, stay home if we’re not feeling well, get a COVID-19 test if we’re experiencing any symptoms, and get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Now that all adults in New Hampshire 16 and older are eligible to register for and receive the vaccine, it’s incumbent upon all of us to make that very personal decision of whether we will get vaccinated.  While the vaccines approved for use in the United States were certainly developed in record time, federal authorities did not take short cuts in their review and approval processes and have been proven safe and effective.  The current pause in the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is further proof that federal and state officials are taking all precautions to ensure the health and safety of everyone receiving this vaccine.  The public-private partnership that state officials have been leading continues to put shots in arms at a record pace. 

 

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Despite the large number of vaccinations being completed, we have seen a troubling increase in the number of new COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations over the past few weeks. But there is hope that these trends can be changed. The chart above shows a dramatic correlation between those who have been vaccinated versus those who are becoming infected with COVID-19.  Between April 1 and April 7, the largest rate of new infections per 100,000 people occurred in age cohorts who either don’t yet qualify for the vaccine (those under 16) or those who have only recently become eligible.  Those who make up the smallest rate of new COVID-19 infections are those who have been eligible to receive the vaccine the longest, those over the age of 50. 

The vaccine is working to reduce COVID-19 infections and, most importantly, protecting our most vulnerable residents from getting severely ill, requiring hospitalization, and dying.  As in other public health crises to date, such as polio and smallpox, a safe and effective vaccine is what led us out of those difficult periods of time, and the COVID-19 pandemic will be no different.  Please, talk with your health care provider, review the data and then, absent any medical contraindications, choose to get the COVID-19 vaccine.  You can find out more information here and register to sign up for the vaccine in New Hampshire here.

Steve Ahnen is the president of the New Hampshire Hospital Association

 

The Centers for Disease Control guidelines highlight the efficacy of wearing masks in slowing the community transmission of COVID-19, in conjunction with other prevention measures that have been following, such as avoiding large crowds, staying 6 feet apart from anyone outside your household, practicing frequent handwashing and getting the COVID-19 vaccine.  These measures are proven to reduce the risk of community transmission.  Given that COVID-19 cases have risen in New Hampshire the last month, hospitals and health systems will continue to encourage their patients and communities to wear masks when outside their home.  It’s one of the most effective tools we have in the fight against COVID-19, and we all want to get back to doing the things we love.

We applaud the U.S. Senate for passing the Medicare Sequester Relief Act which addresses the critical funding it will provide to New Hampshire healthcare providers by addressing the public health and economic crisis created by the COVID-19 pandemic.   This financial relief will allow for continued support of providers' COVID-19-related lost revenues, as well as additional expenses due to activities such as purchasing supplies and equipment, standing up emergency testing centers and other challenges.

Since the pandemic began more than a year ago, it created not only a public health crisis but an economic one for many, including for hospitals and health systems statewide.  Extending the moratorium on the Medicare Sequester cuts has been a significant priority for hospital and health systems who continue to suffer financial losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic.    At a time when they need it most, this bipartisan Relief Act provides critical assistance to the health care heroes on the front lines who continue to fight this pandemic.

We are grateful for the support and leadership of Senator Shaheen, as one of the prime sponsors, as well as that of her colleagues in the Senate, in passing the Medicare Sequester Relief Act, as it will provide critical relief to ensure hospitals and front-line caregivers have what they need to continue caring for our patients and communities, today and into the future.

We applaud the U.S. House for passing the American Rescue Plan as amended by the U.S. Senate in support of the critical relief it will provide to New Hampshire residents by addressing the public health and economic crisis created by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This pandemic created not only a public health crisis but an economic one for many, as well for hospitals and health systems statewide, and as the most comprehensive federal COVID-19 relief legislation passed to date, it will help our frontline healthcare workers continue to serve their patients and communities.   We’re pleased this relief legislation makes additional investments in the fight against COVID-19 and that it secures funding for vaccine production and distribution to support states’ efforts to vaccinate residents as quickly as possible.

We appreciate the leadership of our Congressional delegation in its passage and look forward to President Biden signing this legislation and working with both our state and federal partners to serve our patients and communities, today and into the future.

 

It was one year ago today, March 2nd, that New Hampshire announced its first case of what was simply known as a novel coronavirus.  Since then, we’ve seen COVID-19 close businesses, threaten our healthcare system, push our schools to remote learning and force us to suffer the losses of loved ones.

The last 365 days have presented seemingly insurmountable challenges for our state, our businesses, our communities, and our healthcare system, but New Hampshire has already shown unprecedented perseverance and strength throughout this pandemic.  And while the COVID-19 public health crisis has tested our healthcare system like never before, New Hampshire hospitals have continued to be on the front lines, demonstrating their unwavering resolve, heroic sacrifice and absolute commitment to delivering the critical care patients need and deserve. 

Working together with hospitals across the state, as well as partners at the state and federal levels, we’ve made incredible progress in the fight against COVID-19 with testing, new treatments, and vaccinating New Hampshire residents, but we must remain vigilant.  It remains critical that Granite Staters continue to practice the safe behaviors like washing hands, wearing masks and social distancing that have helped us to see the dramatic reduction in new cases, hospitalizations, and deaths from COVID-19. 

And, ongoing efforts to administer the vaccine are being bolstered with the recent authorization of a third vaccine, an increase in doses being sent to the state and additional sites where every Granite Stater who wants one can get a vaccine.  As in past public health crises like smallpox or polio, a safe and effective vaccine is what will lead us out of the pandemic.

New Hampshire hospitals and health systems took unprecedented actions to respond to the pandemic on behalf of their patients and communities.  As we continue to make our way through this public health crisis, we remain inspired by their dedication as they continue to rise to meet the challenges of their COVID-19 response and recovery.  From the physicians and nurses on the front lines, to the administrative, nutrition, facility and other staff supporting their institutions during this unprecedented time, it is our privilege to extend our deepest appreciation to New Hampshire’s healthcare heroes for their perseverance and strength in the fight against COVID-19.

 

By Steve Ahnen, President, New Hampshire Hospital Association

The holiday season is a time that we often look to slow down, spend time with family and friends, and enjoy the true spirit of the season—the gift of giving to others.  No one exemplifies that spirit more than the women and men of New Hampshire’s hospitals and health systems. 

No one deserves more the rest and a break over the holidays than them.  But as we all know, the COVID-19 pandemic has upended all of our lives and isn’t showing signs of letting up in the weeks ahead.  And that means the health care heroes on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic won’t get the chance to take a break this holiday season.  That’s what they signed up to do when they answered the calling to serve as caregivers.  But they need our help.

They have been there for us and will continue to be there for us, but we need to do all we can to help slow the spread of COVID-19 so that we don’t overwhelm the health care system.  They’ve told us for months:  wear a mask; wash your hands; maintain social distance; avoid gatherings with others outside of your home when you are unable to maintain social distance; and stay home when you’re not feeling well.  Those messages are more important now than ever before. 

As we look to the new year, we do so with renewed hope—hope in the form of safe and effective vaccines.  But inoculating everyone who needs and wants a vaccine will take some time.  That’s why we all have to remain vigilant and continue to follow public health guidelines that we know will help us limit the spread of COVID-19.  Please, don’t let your guard down, continue to do your part and help support the health care heroes on the front lines of this pandemic.  That would be the greatest gift of all.