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  • Nurse wearing a mask giving a thumbs up after receiving a COVID vaccine shot
    August 30, 2021

    Columbia, MD – As a leading healthcare system, MedStar Health is coming together to do our part in the battle against the COVID-19 virus as the Delta variant continues to impact our patients, our work, and our ways of life. Science and medicine, with reinforcement from trusted sources, including the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), indicate the best defense against COVID-19 is to be fully vaccinated.

    With the FDA’s approval of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine on August 23, 2021, MedStar Health will begin to implement our Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination Policy. 

    Showcasing our highest commitment to protecting the safety of those we serve, MedStar Health is requiring all associates, physicians, residents/fellows, students, Board members, medical staff members and other non-employed credentialed professionals, contractors, volunteers, agency employees, and vendors to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by November 1, 2021, as a condition of employment in accordance with our Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination Policy. Fully vaccinated is defined as receiving both doses of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna) or the single-dose COVID-19 vaccine (Johnson & Johnson), and we will offer medical and religious exemptions.

    Vaccinations are provided free of charge.

    Like other healthcare organizations and federal and local institutions, we support the science and safety of COVID-19 vaccines. We are joined by the Maryland Hospital Association (MHA), District of Columbia Hospital Association (DCHA), and their member healthcare systems and hospitals in endorsing mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for healthcare workers. Many have already implemented these requirements as part of local mandates, as have non-healthcare organizations and entities. The goal of protecting and caring for others through vaccination is a common and uniting commitment throughout our community, region, and nation.

    Overall, more than 70% of our associates and 80% of our clinicians are already vaccinated.  Compliance with this requirement from the remainder of our organization will further protect our patients, those who care for them, and our communities. It will move us closer to realizing the normalcy we no longer take for granted. Our commitment requires our shared and united dedication to protect the safety of those we serve.

  • May 24, 2021

    Survey reveals room for improvement in safe sun knowledge and behaviors

    Columbia, MD — MedStar Health has launched National Safe Sun Week to encourage people to enjoy spending time outdoors, safely. National Safe Sun Week will take place annually the week before Memorial Day, the official kick-off to summer, falling on May 24 - May 30, 2021 this year. 

    As we embrace the start of summer, MedStar Health providers seek to raise awareness of the best practices to follow when it comes to sun exposure and heat-related illnesses, ensuring that everyone remains safe as they enjoy the spoils of the warm weather. MedStar Health providers will share skincare tips to help prevent sunburns and skin cancer, raising awareness on the dangers that sun damage brings to people of all races and ethnicities, along with advice on how to safely exercise outdoors and prevent heat illness. 

    “At MedStar Health, we believe that we have a duty to help educate not only our patients, but everyone planning to spend time outdoors during summer,” says Min Deng, MD, dermatologist at MedStar Health. “Our core values have always been centered around treating people well, providing the best care possible to our patients. Our goal with National Safe Sun Week is to help spread awareness around sun safety in the hopes that we see less sun damage and skin cancer patients, less heat illness, and more people living long, healthy lives free of preventable disease.” 

    MedStar Health conducted a survey on behaviors and perceptions around sun safety in conjunction with National Safe Sun Week. The results revealed that we still have a long way to go to educate people on best practices when it comes to enjoying the outdoors safely:

    • Only one in four people know when to reapply sunscreen - every two hours
    • More people report packing snacks for the beach than sunscreen (67.4% vs. 64.6%)
    • Ocean City, Maryland is the favorite beach of people in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area 

    Our goal with National Safe Sun Week is to empower everyone with the knowledge to go outside this summer and enjoy themselves, while staying safe and healthy. 

    As part of our ongoing commitment to our current and future patients, we are sharing sun safety tips to empower everyone with the knowledge they need to enjoy spending time outdoors this summer. For more information, please visit https://nationaltoday.com/national-safe-sun-week/.

    National Safe Sun Week is making news! Visit the links below for great sun safety tips from our experts:

    FOX 5 DC: When is the most important time to reapply sunscreen?
    WTOP: Some tips for protecting your skin from the summer rays and Dangerous heat isn’t just about high temperatures and humidity

  • April 09, 2021

    Healthcare Unites with the Arts to Benefit Public Health and Save Lives

    Columbia, MD — COVID-19 vaccines get the starring role as MedStar Health unites with Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater and DC Health to vaccinate eligible D.C. residents with the latest high capacity site.  The vaccination center located at Arena Stage in Southwest D.C. opened today and will operate Thursdays through Sundays from 8am- 5pm for the next three months.

    Those eligible must make appointments through the D.C. portal, not through MedStar Health.

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    MedStar Health President and Chief Executive Officer Ken Samet visited the site on opening day to thank the teams who have been working ensure the vaccination process runs smoothly.  “MedStar Health is proud to partner with the District of Columbia and Arena Stage to bring easy access to life saving vaccines to District residents. Over the last year, MedStar Health has cared for the COVID and non-COVID care needs of our communities. With the opening of this vaccine distribution location at Arena Stage, we continue to expand the many locations where we bring hope for a future without COVID.”

    “We’re proud to be part of the positive momentum that’s building to vaccinate as many District residents as possible against COVID-19,” said Stephen R.T. Evans, MD, executive vice president for Medical Affairs and chief medical officer for MedStar Health. “A healthcare organization uniting with the arts to benefit the community is such a perfect partnership.  The sooner we get past this pandemic the sooner people can enjoy theater again at places like Arena Stage.  Right now they have the space; we have the clinical expertise and DC Health has the doses of vaccines so we can get shots in arms.”

    “Arena Stage is so happy to be asked to play this role for our community,” said Arena Stage Executive Producer Edgar Dobie. “We can promise everyone a warm and gracious greeting as these essential vaccines are administered by the talented folks at MedStar Health. All of this is made possible by the inspiring and tireless team at the District’s Department of Health.”

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    Providers from across the entire MedStar Health system will be giving as many as a thousand shots a day at the vaccination center.

    Vaccine doses will come from allotments provided to DC Health.  "DC Health is pleased to be working with our community partners like MedStar Health to open vaccination sites that serve a high-capacity of  eligible individuals who book appointments through vaccinate.dc.gov and the District's COVID-19 call center 1-855-363-0333," said Patrick Ashley, Health and Medical Branch Director, COVID Operations and Senior Deputy Director, Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Administration (HEPRA) at DC Health. "The District still needs more vaccine, and we will continue to advocate for additional doses so that we can save lives and meet the demand of our community," he added.

    The vaccination center at Arena Stage is the only high capacity site in the Southwest area of the District.

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