Take a look inside Boston Hope Medical Center
Bridget Sullivan and Dr. Peter Smith helped lead the transformation of the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center into a home and hospital for hundreds.
The field hospital has been named Boston Hope.
Sullivan, who is the director of nursing for the side of the facility serving those who are homeless and have tested positive for COVID 19, described the challenge.
“Just trying to figure out the logistics (and) the space,” she said. “Planning the staffing and training."
"We got it up and running and took our first patients three or four days after we learned that we were going to be doing it," said Smith, the medical director.
Sullivan said since the start, the medical team has cared for more than 200 COVID-positive people who are also experiencing homelessness, a vulnerable population the virus has swept through.
"We are seeing a 35% positive rate, which is extremely high from our shelters," Sullivan said.
Sullivan described the around the clock care provided to patients.
"Some of the days we were in here until 3 o’clock in the morning and coming back at 5 o’clock in the morning."
She said hours like that have eased, but she is still living in a hotel. She said she has only been home twice with close contact impossible.
"I've teared up,” Sullivan said. “I went home to do laundry one time and the kids were like ‘Are you huggable? and I'm like, ‘No.’"
The patients Sullivan and her team are caring for are asymptomatic or have mild COVID symptoms.
"If they do need hospital level of care, we're getting them that when they need it," she said.
Both Smith and Sullivan described themselves as thankful.
"Everybody in there is smiling and happy which is just a huge relief for us,” Sullivan said. “We have such a dedicated and compassionate workforce with us."
"I count myself incredibly grateful to be able to be a part of it here at the Boston Hope shelter," Smith said.
Information about supporting the Boston Hope Medical Center through the Boston Healthcare for the Homeless Program can be found here.