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Date: January 6, 2022


The Digest - GW Clinical Enterprise

**This email contains important COVID-19 information and updates. Please ensure that you read these emails in their entirety. Thank you!**

GW MFA | GW Hospital | GW SMHS

GW COVID-19 Intelligence Unit – Brief Report Omicron Variant of SARS-CoV2 [LINKED]


MFA/Hospital COVID-19 Testing

                                 

  • During the University winter break, GW MFA and GW Hospital were able to provide testing at the University COVID-19 testing trailer as a safe means of ensuring an accessible, accurate, and timely testing option for the MFA, Hospital, and select University essential personnel who needed COVID tested due to occupational exposure or symptomatic illness.
  • LOCATION: The trailer is located at 20th and H Street, NW; no appointment is necessary.
  • HOURS: Tomorrow, January 7 - the trailer will be open from 10am to 2pm.
  • FUTURE TESTING PLANS: Details about testing for next week and beyond will be sent as they become available.


  • What to Bring
  • Please make sure that you bring your driver's license and insurance card to your test, as the cost of the test will be billed to your insurance provider.
  • Wear a well-fitting mask


  • Payment
  • For Hospital employees, there may be co-pays related to this service as you would receive at any traditional outpatient testing site unless advised by Employee Health.
  • For MFA and essential GWU employees, there will be no cost for this service at this time.
  • All personnel tested will be given instructions on how to access the Epic patient portal to see test results. PCR test turnaround is 24 hours.


COVID-19 Treatment:


  • Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against COVID-19 are in short supply nationwide. Unfortunately, most of the available products have lost efficacy against the Omicron variant. The GW Hospital Emergency Department (ED) receives limited shipments of sotrovimab doses by federal allocation, prioritized for those at highest risk (age 65+, moderately or severely immunocompromised, other exceptional circumstances) and is pending further federal supply. Physicians considering mAb therapy are encouraged to check the current situation with the ED and to refer patients to the US DHHS Combat COVID website/hotline.


  • Paxlovid and molnupiravir, oral drugs for treatment of COVID-19 shown to reduce bad outcomes in high-risk patients, were authorized by the FDA in late December. A limited number of doses are being distributed by DC Health, with the supply expected to improve by February. Details of distribution in DC, including pharmacy locations and other prescribing considerations, were released on 01.06.2022.

  

  • GW is a site for the ACTIV-6 trial, which is evaluating repurposed (i.e. approved by the US FDA for other conditions) medications for use in COVID-19. Patients with mild to moderate symptoms can enroll to receive free medication and a gift card by mail. Providers can refer patients to the study by contacting ACTIV-6 Coordinator on TigerText, or having the patient call the coordinator at (202) 741-2917.

The GW Medical Faculty Associates


MFA PPE REQUIREMENTS FOR ALL EMPLOYEES - Faculty and Staff (Linked)


New CDC/DHHS/MFA Occupational Health guidance for returning to work


Updated work restrictions for HCPs with confirmed COVID-19 infection:

  • Employees with any symptoms, even if mild, must isolate for 10 days. To end isolation employees must be fever free with significant improvement in symptoms for 24 hours.



  • Employees who are asymptomatic and never exhibited symptoms of COVID-19 may return to work after 7 days with a negative test if remaining asymptomatic, The test should be an antigen test done on day 6 or 7 of isolation. If negative, the employee may return after 7 days of isolation; if positive, 10 days of isolation is required.


Updated work restrictions for Asymptomatic HCPs with Exposures: 

  • Boosted employees can continue to work but must obtain tests on days 1 and 5-7 while wearing a mask consistently and self-monitoring for symptoms.


  • Unvaccinated or un-boosted employees are restricted from working for 7 days and may return if no symptoms and a negative test on days 5-7. If no testing, the employee must quarantine for 10 days total, counting from the last exposure. 



  • Under specific circumstances named by DC Health, asymptomatic employees may be allowed to work sooner with extra safety measures in place to prevent exposure of others; instructions will be given by GW MFA Occupational Health.
  • “Exposure” in a health care setting is defined as contact with a COVID-positive person (source) within 6 feet for ≥15 minutes without appropriate PPE.
  • For household contacts that are continuous in nature, please contact Occupational Health or the Tiger Text MFA COVID-19 role for guidance.



MFA "Booster" Dose Vaccine Requirement

  • In order to maintain the safety of our patients and each other, the “booster” dose of the vaccine will be a requirement for all MFA employees in January 2022. Pre-schedule or visit the MFA COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic to get your booster if you have not done so already.
  • Please email proof of your COVID-19 primary and booster vaccination to vaccinerecord@mfa.gwu.edu by Saturday, January 15th, 2022.
  • All employees are required to submit proof to Occupational Health even if they received their booster at the GW COVID Vaccine Clinic. Please contact occupationalhealth@mfa.gwu.edu if you have questions or special circumstances. 


Employee COVID-19 Safety Reminders:

  • If positive, symptomatic, or concerned about an exposure, please be sure to contact Occupational Health at occupationalhealth@mfa.gwu.edu. Please also review the Employee Protocol for Exposure document.
  • We are resuming double masking or the use of N95 masks and eye protection for all patient encounters. Please see the detailed PPE guide for more information. For non-patient-facing work, surgical or droplet masks should be worn at all other times.
  • Physical distancing of 6 feet or more is required in break rooms when eating/drinking. We encourage staggering eating times, converting meetings of ≥10 people to virtual/hybrid, and having fewer people gather in small spaces in general.
  • If you plan to travel, make sure you are familiar with the MFA Travel Guidelines.
  • As a reminder, MFA visitor restrictions remain in place, with persons accompanying the patient limited to those needed to assist a physically or cognitively impaired patient, or by special instructions from the physician (e.g. pregnancy care).


COVID 19-Labor and Delivery Guidelines - Updated December 2021 (LINKED)

GW Hospital


PPE: 

The Omicron variant is very transmissible and it is important that you take precautions to protect yourself as well as your fellow co-workers, patients and family. Please remember to wear the proper PPE, practice good hand hygiene and physically distance as much as possible. For those individuals who are providing direct patient care, an N-95 mask and a face shield are required. All other employees members must wear surgical masks that are properly placed over the nose and mouth, at all times, unless eating or drinking. To obtain an N95 mask or other PPE attire, contact your unit manager/clinical supervisor. 

 

Incident Command Center: 

The incident management team is available 24/7 to address and manage any concerns or issues experienced during this current COVID-19 surge.  The incident management team continuously works with hospital management to match available resources and capabilities to patient needs. We recognize and appreciate everyone’s work in collaboration to provide safe patient care. If you have any specific needs, call our Command Center at 202-715-4242. 

 

Booster Shots: 

If you have not already done so, we strongly encourage you to get the COVID-19 booster shot. You are eligible once it has been more than six months since your second COVID-19 vaccine. You can schedule the vaccine in Employee Health here: https://calendly.com/gwmedicalenterprise1/covid19vaccine?month=2021-12. This booster is a vital component in keeping all of us safe and in helping to protect you in the event that you do contract COVID-19. In addition to the booster, please continue to follow our best practice guidelines with regard to physical distancing, hand hygiene and masking.


The GW SMHS


Please be familiar with all communications from the University related to coming back to campus. If you are a student, please ensure you are familiar with instructions from your program directors/advisors/deans.

This email is intended to serve as a digest of all messaging for our clinical faculty, students, and staff. This email is distributed at the close of business weekly, as we are managing operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. 


If you have feedback, please feel free to send to SMHSNews@gwu.edu 

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