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Community Notifications

April 7, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

We hope you are staying well and safe! We wanted to pass along an updated guidance from the CDC and its recommendation for cloth face covers to prevent possible transmission of COVID-19 even if individuals lack symptoms. Please review the guidance, which also has an instructional video on how to create a cloth face covering. In addition, for those within the city of Boston, Mayor Walsh announced strict new measures for social and physical distancing for Boston residents, effective today.

The University recommends following these guidelines to better manage the spread of COVID-19 and help keep you safe.

Sincerely,
Kevin Dolan, Chief Human Resources Officer 
John Tummino, Director of Environmental Health and Safety 

April 1, 2020

Dear MCPHS Community Members:

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker extended the order to close all non-essential businesses in the Commonwealth to curb the spread of COVID-19. The order is extended until at least Monday, May 4, 2020.

Essential businesses, including grocery stores, pharmacies, and gas stations will remain open. While MCPHS is not considered an essential business, the Governor’s order includes language that will exempt certain college and university employees from the ban in order to maintain essential campus services. These services include facilitating distance learning and providing services to the students who remain on campus.

Our physical campuses remain closed to all but residential students and essential personnel. However, all coursework will continue through our online platforms. Schools will receive continuing guidance from the Provost Office regarding the Academic Continuity Plans for the University.

Employees will continue to work remotely but those essential employees who may be required to be on campus will be notified by their Dean or supervisor.

The Manchester campus will operate under the same guidance as the rest of the University.

We will continue to update the MCPHS community as the situation unfolds. In the meantime, if you have questions, you may contact the University by telephone, 617-879-5999, or email, Info@mcphs.edu. The hotline is staffed from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. All updates will also be posted on the COVID-19 pages of the website.

Thank you for your continued cooperation and resilience as we navigate this unfamiliar landscape.

All the best,
Richard J. Lessard
Interim President

March 30, 2020

To date, MCPHS is aware of seven (7) community members who have tested positive for COVID-19. Some of these cases have been confirmed by a local department of public health or the CDC; others were self-reported. The individuals are receiving appropriate care as recommended by DPH and the CDC. In each case, the University and/or local DPH has worked to identify anyone who may have had close contact with the infected parties and advise them on monitoring for symptoms and self-quarantine. We will continue to update this message for accuracy. Consistent with guidance from Massachusetts DPH and the CDC, we also ask that you respect the privacy and confidentiality of those impacted by COVID-19. Anonymity for these individuals is paramount.

March 22, 2020 

MCPHS has been notified by the City of Worcester Division of Public Health (WDPH) that it has its first confirmed case of COVID-19 in a member of our MCPHS Worcester community. We are working closely with the WDPH and want to assure our community that all of their guidelines and protocols are being strictly followed.

The WDPH informed the University that the individual has had no contact with anyone on campus. The community member is in self isolation. The WDPH will continue to monitor the individual until they are released from isolation. The WDPH further advised that so long as the case follows the guidance provided, there is very little risk to anyone on campus.

The anonymity of this individual is extremely important and we must completely respect their privacy so they can focus on their health.

We will continue to update the MCPHS community as we receive more information from the WDPH. In the meantime, if you have questions, you may contact the University by telephone, 617-879-5999, or email, Info@mcphs.edu. The hotline is staffed from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

March 20, 2020

Dear Graduates,

Since my communication earlier today regarding the very difficult decision to cancel our May 9th University Commencement due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the University has received feedback from our graduates, and their families and loved ones, expressing disappointment that we will not be able to celebrate your significant achievements as planned on May 9th.

In my announcement I mentioned that we will explore various options for honoring you and for celebrating your time at MCPHS. While a virtual experience was one potential option, please know that the University has not made a decision. In collaboration with the Provost and Dean of Students, I have decided to form a task force with key representatives from across the University, which will include, most importantly, representatives from our MCPHS Class of 2020. This task force will be formed in the coming week and we will solicit input from our graduating class and our MCPHS Community. The task force will bring forward recommendations to the President and Provost Office for honoring the Class of 2020.

In the meantime, with regards to your graduation fee, you will receive a full refund if you have been charged for the May 2020 Commencement.

Thank you once again for your feedback and for your patience. These times of unprecedented challenge have brought us together as one MCPHS Community, and we will work together to determine the best way to make your celebrations memorable and meaningful. Please be assured that the University is fully committed to achieving this outcome.

Sincerely,
Interim President Lessard

March 23, 2020

Dear members of the MCPHS community,

These are clearly challenging times for us all, where our daily lives have been upended and our routines disrupted. I want to offer my support to you all, as well as my gratitude, for your extraordinary efforts in keeping our community healthy and safe.

Students across all of our campuses have had to adjust to new norms at a moment's notice. Classes have been moved online, many students have been asked to move out of their dorms, events have been canceled, and services have been adjusted. We are taking guidance from the CDC, as well as state and local authorities, as we continue to respond to this evolving crisis.

To our students and their loved ones who have had to deal with these trying circumstances - thank you for your continued patience with all that you have had to endure. I want to also thank our faculty and staff who have been required to transform their approach to supporting our community in a profound and immediate manner. They have embraced these changes in an extremely positive way and are implementing timely and effective strategies.

Because this new normal is constantly evolving, I ask you to keep a close eye on your emails, MCPHS social media accounts, and this MCPHS COVID-19 website. The University will be in regular communication regarding updated policies and response measures to the coronavirus, and we will update this website frequently.

Classes

  • MCPHS has extended spring break through Sunday, March 22. Beginning Monday, March 23, we will resume the spring semester and instruction will be delivered virtually through online venues and/or other forms of remote learning for the remainder of the semester. The move to distance learning will not affect international students’ visa status. Academic programs will provide our students with additional guidance relative to their coursework.
  • At this point, students on clinical rotations will continue to receive information from their academic programs/clinical education teams as to the plans for their schedules moving forward. The University is continuing to closely monitor the situation in conjunction with our clinical sites.

Campus Services

  • All MCPHS campus locations have modified their services in response to the current situation. Please check the website for detailed information about your campus location.
  • In order to help keep our students, employees and patients as safe and healthy as possible, all clinics and treatment centers have temporarily closed effective Tuesday, March 17. Please see the clinics and treatment centers pages for more details.

Please know that a cross-section of University leadership has been meeting each business day and is working across the institution to respond to the situation as it evolves and to ensure that we are adequately prepared. We understand that our students and their families will have questions. Therefore, MCPHS is operating an information hotline, and those who have questions may call 617-879-5999 or email Info@mcphs.edu. The hotline is staffed from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Again, thank you to the entire MCPHS community for your cooperation, flexibility, and understanding. I am confident that the measures we are taking during this time, while difficult, are in the best interest of our entire University community.

With gratitude and appreciation,

Richard J. Lessard
Interim President