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This month’s meeting of the Public Health Council included a series of Determination of Need (DON) requests, followed by a set of three of informational presentations on pending amendments to regulations.

The Council took up deliberations for a series of three Determination of Need requests, each of which was approved:

  • A request from Boston Medical Center for new construction and renovation that would centralize all of BMC’s inpatient and interventional care, and most of its ambulatory services, at the hospital’s E. Newton Street campus
  • A request from BSL/BN Commons SNF Operator LLC, d/b/a The Commons in Lincoln, to construct a 32-bed Level II Skilled Nursing Facility at the company’s existing continuing care retirement community in Lincoln
  • A significant change to an approved but not yet implemented DoN request from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, that would expand the clinical services footprint in the Hospital’s “Building of the Future” project, currently under construction on the hospital campus.

The Council then heard an informational briefing from Bureau of Environmental Health (BEH) Director Suzanne Condon on proposed amendments to regulations governing water quality testing at bathing beaches in Massachusetts. The proposed amendments will next go out for public review and comment, after which a final version of the amendments will be put to the Public Health Council for a vote.

Following that discussion, BEH Director Condon provided an informational update on a series of proposed amendments which would consolidate multiple sets of regulations related to food safety into a single, modernized regulation. Following preliminary approval by the Council, the amendments will undergo a public comment period, after which the Council will be presented with a final version of the amendments for a vote.

Finally, the Council received a status update from Commissioner Cheryl Bartlett on the Department’s activities since Governor Patrick announced a Public Health Emergency in response to the growing opioid addiction epidemic in Massachusetts.


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