Latest News

Here is where you'll find updates as they happen about the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and VUMC's preparations.

Note that these blog posts are published in real time to keep you informed as this situation evolves. The posts appear on this site in reverse chronological order and are dated. Information in newer posts are necessarily more current (unless a dated update note is included on an old post).  

Hotel Stay program extended through end of year

VUMC's popular hotel stay program will continue for the remainder of the 2020 year. Employees who work with or near patients may take advantage of VUMC's partnership with local hotels to provide temporary housing options near the main campus.

VIDEO: Dr. Balser on Masking Guidance

Dr. Jeff Balser announces new VUMC masking guidance and encourages everyone to do three things to prevent the spread of COVID-19: wear a mask, wash your hands, stay six feet apart.     Related Links:

New Guidance for Use of COVID-19 Eye Protection Goes into Effect on Monday

With the rise in incidence of COVID-19, the CDC and Tennessee Department of Health have enhanced the recommended PPE to include eye protection (e.g. face shields, goggles, eye shields) for all direct patient encounters. Starting Monday, July 20, VUMC Guidelines will align with these recommendations to include use of eye protection along with surgical/procedural masks for all direct patient encounters (even with patients with a negative COVID screening test). Additional guidance and FAQs will be forthcoming.

N95 Users Can Sterilize Masks for Reuse

In April, Vanderbilt University Medical Center began using hydrogen peroxide vapor as approved by the FDA for sterilization of N95 facemask-respirators used by health care workers to protect against COVID-19. N95s are typically discard after a single use but the threat of supply shortages have prompted hospitals around the U.S. to adopt sterilization procedures that allow reuse.

Outpatients who Previously Tested Positive or Report Exposure to COVID-19

With the continued spread of COVID-19 in the community and for the protection of VUMC staff, faculty, patients and visitors it is important for VUMC to know if patients have previously tested positive or been exposed to COVID-19. These guidelines include questions that should be asked at time of scheduling and instruction on how to handle the different situations.

VUMC Expresses Appreciation for Generous Donations in the Fight Against COVID-19

Five months into the COVID-19 pandemic, Vanderbilt University Medical Center continues to receive numerous generous donations, large and small, from individuals, corporations, non-profits and other benefactors. "These gifts benefit our doctors, nurses, staff and patients. Every donation we receive at VUMC allows us to continue to focus on providing a safe environment for our patients and staff and we are very grateful. The generosity of the community has been overwhelming," said Teresa Dail, RN, BSN, Chief Supply Chain Officer for VUMC.

Does prolonged wearing of a facemask cause harm?

Question:  I have heard about concerns that wearing a mask for a prolonged period of time can cause you to retain or breathe in more carbon dioxide (CO2) or get less oxygen and this can make you sick.  I even heard about people who had car accidents they felt were due to this issue.  Does mask wearing for a prolonged time cause this?

VUMC Shout Outs!

See the latest VUMC Shout Out videos and send yours to vumcshoutouts@vumc.org. Learn more here.