The Mass HIway

Mass HIwayThe Atrius Health medical groups including Harvard Vanguard are participating in the Mass HIway, a secure statewide computer database that assists in connecting your healthcare providers so your health information can be more easily shared between them.

The Mass HIway does not store patients’ medical records or any health information; instead, and only with your consent, you allow your healthcare organization to send demographic information about you to the Mass HIway to be stored in a secure database. Your provider can safely send your information to any other organization participating in the Mass HIway. In addition, the demographic data can be searched by these other healthcare organizations (like hospitals) that participate in the Mass HIway, and they can more quickly and safely request and receive your health information and medical history when they need it to care for you. Continue reading

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A 21-day Vegan Challenge

Vegan Food.shutterstock_198372692Whether you want to improve your overall health, lose weight, demonstrate your compassion for animals, or help the environment, there are numerous reasons to eat fewer foods that come from animals. If you have thought about this before but didn’t know how to start, take a moment to read this story – I hope it will give you some ideas and inspiration to get started. Continue reading

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Update: Message to Our Patients and Visitors

To our patients and visitors:

As you may have heard, a patient was briefly in the Braintree Harvard Vanguard office on Sunday 10/12 with a question raised of Ebola virus infection. At the moment, things are looking like the probability that this patient has Ebola is quite low.

The patient, who was clinically stable, was quickly ushered out of the building and into his own car to reduce any potential exposure of others, before being transported to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center for further evaluation. Ebola transmission requires exposure to blood or body fluids. This patient had no cough or sneezing, no vomiting or diarrhea ,and no bleeding, and therefore was not exposing anyone to blood or body fluids. NO ONE in the Braintree office would have had significant exposure—neither our staff nor other patients present in the building at the time. Patients and staff who were in the building at the time do NOT pose any risk to others. They do NOT need any special disinfection or decontamination or temperature monitoring.

The only disinfection necessary for the building was straightforward and minor, using CDC specified cleaning solution and was done before the building opened today.

Staff and patients coming to Braintree are safe. We have reviewed procedures with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and are confident that all is being done appropriately. Normal operations continue at Braintree today Monday, 10/13.

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Updated information about a patient who visited our Braintree practice

The following is a statement that Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center released on Sunday night about a patient being evaluated there that had been at our Braintree practice earlier in the day:

Earlier today, we had been asked to accept in transfer a patient who had reported traveling from Liberia. While Liberia is an area where Ebola is present, after our initial evaluation, this patient does not appear to meet CDC criteria to be considered someone at high risk for Ebola and the likelihood of Ebola Virus Disease is extremely low. The patient will remain in isolation as we continue to evaluate and monitor the patient’s condition. All precautions continue to be taken to ensure the safety of our patients, their families and our staff. We are in close contact with the Boston Public Health Commission and the State Department of Public Health.

The hospital remains open for all normal clinical operations and visits.

We don’t anticipate any further information on this matter tonight.

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Update: Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates Statement

A patient who had been to Liberia presented himself today at the Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates  Braintree practice complaining of headache and muscle aches. Out of an abundance of caution we immediately notified authorities and the patient was securely removed from the building and put into an ambulance now headed to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. The building was closed briefly but has now re-opened. We are working closely with the State Department of Public Health.

Update: As of 5:30pm today, our Braintree practice has been cleared by the State Department of Public Health to reopen for usual business and will be open for holiday hours tomorrow.


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Harvard Vanguard Practices Receive PCMH 2011 Recognition

VC0A3832We are excited to share that all Harvard Vanguard practices have received recognition from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) as a Patient-Centered Medical Home 2011 (PCMH 2011).

PCMH 2011 sets the newest standards for a model of healthcare delivery that encourages improved quality and enables greater involvement of patients in their own care. It is based upon standards that assess whether a physician practice functions as a “patient-centered medical home.” A patient-centered medical home is a setting where each patient has an ongoing relationship with a personal physician who leads a team and an organization that takes collective responsibility for patient care. Continue reading

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Columbus Day Holiday Hours Notice

Christopher ColumbusOn Monday, October 13th, Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates will be closed for the Columbus Day holiday except for those practices listed below, which are open for pre-scheduled urgent care appointments. If you feel you need medical advice or think that you may need to be seen, call your doctor’s office at any time, day or night. Your call will be directed to our 24/7 medical staff and triaged as needed. If it is determined that you need an urgent care appointment, the medical staff can schedule you for an appointment.

As always, if you are experiencing a life threatening emergency, please call 911 or your local emergency access number.

Please note: Pharmacy, laboratory, and radiology will be open at the times listed below as well. Continue reading

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Better Care for a Better Life: Andrea

AndreaFrom a young age, weight had been a struggle for Andrea. She tried diet after diet, but always found herself unable to keep the weight off. It became a vicious cycle. As Andrea got older, her concerns about being overweight became less about her appearance and more about her health. She grew concerned about diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease.

So, she turned to her long-time Harvard Vanguard primary care physician, Dr. Patricia Montaperto, at our Chelmsford practice for advice on what to do next. Dr. Montaperto recommended that she see health coach Heidi Duskey. With Heidi’s help and encouragement, Andrea set goals for herself: to be a more active person, to lose weight and to stop taking blood pressure medicine.

Watch here to see how far Andrea has come and to learn how she got to where she is today. Continue reading

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Baby’s Visit to the Pediatrician’s Office

Given how quickly your baby grows and changes during the first months and years of her life, well child visits with your pediatrician are very important, but as a new parent, you may not know what to expect during your child’s first few visits to the pediatrician.

In the video below, Dr. Eumene Ching, a pediatrician and chief of the pediatrics department at our Cambridge practice, narrates each step of an infant well child visit and explains what your pediatrician is checking – and why – in regards to your baby’s growth and development. Continue reading

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Preserving Memory Function as you Age

memory function.shutterstock_27256336You lost your car keys twice last week, or you forgot what you wanted to get when you walked into the living room. Are you just having a senior moment, or could it be the beginning of a more serious memory problem? Continue reading

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