Improving population health across the Commonwealth.

Public Health & Wellness

As stewards of the public health and one of the state’s largest employer groups, hospitals and health care organizations are well positioned to address the various needs of patients, employees, communities and all residents of the commonwealth. Through the top-notch care they provide, as well as their community benefit programs and worksite wellness initiatives, hospitals and healthcare organizations are tackling many important public health issues including the rising obesity epidemic, health disparities, and chronic disease management.

The latest information on COVID-19, a novel coronavirus.



The latest information on COVID-19, a novel coronavirus.


All Massachusetts hospitals have established policies for containing and treating contagious diseases and for dealing with patient surges if the need arises. Hospitals are dedicated to ensuring safe patient care and providing the men and women who treat patients the safest possible environments to conduct their work. MHA and its membership have been in regular contact with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and national health organizations to ensure that the commonwealth is well-prepared to meet the challenges presented by the COVID-19 novel coronavirus. 

The Most Current Information

These state, federal, and global entities are continually updating their resources to provide the most current information on COVID-19.


The well-respected medical journal, The Lancet, has created a coronavirus research center that brings together content from across The Lancet’s many journals (for example, The Lancet Global Health, The Lancet Infectious Diseases, and The Lancet Respiratory Medicine) as it is published. The content on the website is free.

This 5-page list from the federal government details many links to federal agencies and their specific guidance related to COVID-19. It's a valuable resource. 



Frequently Asked Questions About COVID-19

What is it? How does it spread? How do I protect myself? What about my pet and the novel coronavirus?  Check here for answers to these and other common questions.

Federal Waivers

In certain circumstances, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services using section 1135 of the Social Security Act can temporarily modify or waive certain Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, or HIPAA requirements, called 1135 waivers. Click here to view a list of waivers relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.

State Executive Orders 

The Baker Administration under the emergency order issued on March 10 has used its authority to grant a series of emergency orders and guidance documents to ease restrictions on providers responding to the pandemic. Click here for a list of these orders


MHA’s Strategic Partner, Symmetry Workforce Solutions, is offering MHA members free access to a rapid response option for your supplemental staffing needs via their parent company, Aya Healthcare. Aya is proactively qualifying a workforce of nurses, respiratory therapists, and other staff that may be needed to respond rapidly to the situation. To date, more than 20 state hospital associations are participating and Aya has engaged more than 500,000 clinicians regarding interest and opportunities to serve across the U.S. For information, contact Diane Adams, RN, at or (609) 240-5006; Guy Evans, at or (732) 245-0212; or MHA’s Jim Vahey at

 Caring for the Caregiver: COVID-19 Resources 

MHA has assembled resources to support caregiver wellbeing during this challenging time. The list at the link here includes timely webinars, articles, toolkits and more with information on stress management, self-care, and caregiver support.

Provider Toolkits

This section contains operational resources for hospitals that are updating their airborne isolation plans, personal protective equipment inventory, among other best practices to employ during widespread contagion events. The resources are from around the U.S.

Massachusetts General Hospital’s Center for Disaster Medicine has created this 32-page SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Toolkit (updated Feb. 28, 2020), which is a compilation of resources to support an organization’s planning for high consequence infectious diseases (HCIDs) requiring airborne isolation + contact isolation + eye protection for healthcare workers and other staff who encounter the patient.

The Massachusetts Region 1 Regional Disaster Health Response System (MA/Region 1 RDHRS) aims to provide access to tools and resources to assist preparedness professionals in planning for emergencies. The resources listed on this page are intended for use by hospitals, public health departments and other health professionals responding to COVID-19.

Brigham and Women's Hospital COVID-19 ProtocolsThis document and any policies described were prepared on the dates listed under each chapter heading by and for Partners HealthCare medical professionals (a.k.a. clinicians, care givers) and employees and is being made available publicly for informational purposes only, in the context of a public health emergency related to COVID-19 (a.k.a. the coronavirus) and in connection with the state of emergency declared by the Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the President of the United States.
This CDC Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Hospital Preparedness Assessment Tool will help hospitals prevent the spread of respiratory diseases including COVID-19 within the facility and help to promptly identify and isolate patients with possible COVID-19 and inform the correct facility staff and public health authorities. 

This CDC Interim EMS Guidance applies to all first responders, including law enforcement, fire services, emergency medical services, and emergency management officials, who anticipate close contact with persons with confirmed or possible COVID-19 in the course of their work.

The Occupation Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has control and prevention guidance for specific worker groups and their employers, including the healthcare workforce.

The COVID-19 situation can be extremely anxiety provoking for anyone, but especially for those in early recovery.  This might be exacerbated by people unable to attend their normal support group meetings or other recovery supports. The Grayken Center for Addiction at Boston Medical Center is sharing a short list of resources that may be helpful for behavioral health patients or other people in recovery. 

The Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) has guidance on:
Do’s and Don’ts Relating to Wearing Personal Protective Equipment
Infection Prevention for Alternate Care Sites – Guidance for when hospitals and healthcare agencies cannot absorb patient flux and when alternate care sites may need to be established to meet medical care needs and permit existing healthcare systems to continue operations.

Click here for more resources 

Command Center Situation Update

Antibiotic Resistance

The overuse and misuse of antibiotics is causing bacteria to adapt and change in a way that reduces the effectiveness of drugs, chemicals or other agents designed to cure or prevent infections.


Infectious Disease


From influenza to Ebola to Zika, infectious diseases are creating new challenges for hospitals and healthcare organizations to provide state-of-the-art care that effectively treats patients while minimizing the risk to their families and the staff who treat them.


Substance Use Disorder

Under the leadership of its board of trustees, The Massachusetts Health & Hospital Association has created a Substance Use Disorder Prevention and Treatment Task Force to develop provider focused strategies to help address the high incidence of opioid misuse that affects our communities.

Click here for detailed information on MHA’s Substance Use Disorder Prevention and Treatment Task Force (SUDPTTF). It is located on the association’s quality and patient safety website, PatientCareLink.


Emergency Preparedness

Healthcare organizations face emergencies as widely varied as mass casualty incidents to infectious disease threats. The Massachusetts Health & Hospital Association offers members the latest information on those threats with guidance from a wide range of state, federal and clinical resources.
COVID-19 Webpage
Learn More...


Tobacco-Free Hospitals

Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death in the US, and hospitals are in a unique position to serve as role models on this vital public health issue. The Massachusetts Health & Hospital Association is proud to take a leadership role in an effort to ensure hospitals and healthcare organizations go tobacco free, even declining to hire tobacco users.

As stewards of the public's health, hospitals are well positioned to become leaders in the tobacco-free endeavor. MHA’s Tobacco-Free Hospitals initiative is designed to encourage and support Bay State hospitals' voluntary effort to become tobacco-free and ban use of all tobacco products anywhere on the hospital campus.

Visit the pages below for comprehensive information on MHA’s tobacco-free hospitals initiative. 


Population Health

As stewards of the public health and one of the state’s largest employer groups, hospitals are well positioned to address the various health needs of their patients, employees, communities and all residents of the commonwealth. Through the top notch care they provide, as well as their community benefit programs and worksite wellness initiatives, hospitals are tackling many important public health issues including the rising obesity epidemic, health disparities, and chronic disease management.

MHA members with appropriate log-in information can also access our Hospital Community Benefits Support page for the latest community benefits report and a special MHA tool to search recent community benefit programs statewide.