With news of the coronavirus outbreak dominating world headlines, I wanted to reach out to assure you that Community Servings is taking extra precautions to ensure the health and safety of our clients and staff. The spread of COVID-19 in our community is troubling for all of us.
As a production facility that prepares food for critically and chronically ill neighbors across Massachusetts, we are already operating under the most stringent health and safety measures. Our normal operational guidelines include following the CDC’s recommended handwashing instructions, and requiring employees and kitchen volunteers to stay home when feeling unwell.
Our kitchen team and volunteers already wear and change protective gloves throughout the day when preparing and packaging food, and prepping meal bags for delivery. We know firsthand that for people whose immune system is working overtime due to an illness like HIV/AIDS, cancer, heart failure, kidney disease and more, colds and viruses – while inconveniences for most of us – can be life-threatening.
The extra steps we’ve taken to mitigate the spread of germs in our building and to our clients includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Preparing and freezing extra inventory of medically tailored meals
- Shipping a week’s worth of diet-specific, non-perishable, shelf-stable food to all clients to ensure they can maintain their required caloric intake in the rare case of a delivery disruption
- Installing extra hand sanitizer stations throughout our facility
- Requiring all visitors to our Food Campus to sanitize their hands upon entering the building
- Reminding all kitchen volunteers and employees to stay home unless they feel 100% healthy
- Having delivery drivers sanitize their hands and wear a new pair of protective gloves when making each delivery
- Asking volunteers and visitors who’ve recently traveled outside of the U.S. in the last 14 days, or been in close contact with someone who has or may have contracted COVID-19, to refrain from visiting our building for at least two weeks
- Holding daily meetings with our leadership team to monitor new developments and adapt our operations accordingly
I am confident that these extra steps, combined with our already strict approach to health and safety, will allow us to continue serving our clients as we closely monitor and navigate this developing situation.
Please know that my colleagues and I are fully committed to keeping our clients safe and making sure they receive the nutritious food they need to improve and maintain their health.
David B. Waters