An email blast that went out to all patients in the Mass General Brigham hospital network announcing that the hospital system would halt its vaccination process due to supply issues does not apply to the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital, officials confirmed Friday morning.
The Mass General email blast was sent out just after midnight Friday to users of Patient Gateway, which is the Mass General Brigham hospital system’s patient software. Martha’s Vineyard Hospital is owned and operated by the Mass General system, formerly known as Partners Healthcare.
The hospital quickly clarified the email from the parent company Friday morning, saying that the announcement did not apply on the Island because the hospital is considered a rural vaccine delivery site by the state.
“You may receive a message through Patient Gateway that suggests the Mass General Brigham will be suspending its vaccination program in the near future due to a lack of supply,” the hospital email said. “PLEASE NOTE – this message DOES NOT apply to Patient Gateway patients at Martha’s Vineyard Hospital.”
The original email from Mass General came from the hospital’s chief patient experience and equity officer Tom Sequist and was sent to all Patient Gateway users across the state. A story in the Boston Globe late Thhursday reported that the state would be severely curtailing vaccine distribution to hospitals that weren’t using vaccine doses fast enough, instead redistributing them to state-run vaccination clinics.
“Because of limited vaccine supply, we are no longer able to schedule any new vaccination appointments for patients at Mass General Brigham vaccine clinics,” the email from Mass General said.
But the message does not apply to Martha’s Vineyard Hospital, which is currently functioning as the state’s vaccination delivery location on the Island. The hospital clarified that the local scheduling process would be unaffected.
“Whether you are a patient or not, there are NO CHANGES to our sign-up process to receive the vaccine,” the hospital clarification email stated.
Despite the clarification, the initial email still proved an unwelcome, early-morning jolt for many Islanders, who have waited patiently for a different message from Patient Gateway.
The hospital will continue to reach out through the software to all eligible vaccine recipients in order to schedule shots.
“We apologize for any misunderstanding the Patient Gateway message may have created,” the hospital said in its email.
A community forum is scheduled for 5 p.m. tonight on the vaccine rollout, jointly sponsored by the hospital and Dukes County.