Preparing Children for When Their Parents Return to Work
Kaitlin Macdonald, NP, is intimately familiar with how members of the hospital community look out for one another. As the director of Massachusetts General Hospital's Occupational Health Services (OHS), Macdonald oversees a team of clinicians and administrative professionals who provide care and support for employees with work-related health needs, including new hire screenings and responding to workplace injuries. Once the COVID-19 surge began, Macdonald says, “the ‘normal’ operations of the Mass General Occupational Health clinic changed drastically, even though we still provide many of our same core services.”
One of the biggest changes for Macdonald’s team has been staffing the OHS COVID-19 Call Center. The group has been working evenings and weekends to ensure the latest information is available for employees when they need it. “All of the clinicians and administrative professionals have gone above and beyond over the last few months to ensure the occupational health needs of our employees—particularly those needs related to COVID—have been met,” she says. “They have handled a tremendous increase in volume with grace. They have been a listening ear for employees who are anxious about their COVID-19 results or about family members and loved ones.”
Even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic surge, the OHS clinic staff spent many hours planning for the needs of the Mass General community, says Macdonald. The sheer volume of need, however, has been unprecedented.
Kaitlin Macdonald, NP
We are grateful for the opportunity to help those on the frontline stay on the frontline as safely as possible.
Mass General's Occupational Health Services
Most OHS providers now spend most of their time performing COVID contact tracing within the hospital—speaking to people who have the virus to determine who they have come into contact with and investigating potential exposures from employees who tested positive for the virus. The process helps them understand workplace COVID-19 exposures and identify and plan for both the hospital’s and employees’ evolving needs.
“I am extremely proud to be a part of the OHS team,” says Macdonald. “They are a special group and I am grateful to be working with each and every one of them. As a team, we are grateful for the opportunity to help those on the front line stay on the front line as safely as possible.”
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