In order for the waiver to be granted, providers are required to submit to the Bureau of Substance Abuse Services, a Severe Weather Policy, signed off by both the medical and executive directors, which addresses the following:
- Clearly describe the agency's efforts to avoid closure, such as implementing flexible and/or expanded time for dosing; the use of alternate dosing sites; or the program setting up staff at area hotels. If alternate guest dosing sites are an option, then current specific written agreements for guest dosing indicating the agencies involved, and how the guest dosing will be implemented, as well as how the consumers will be notified and how confidentiality will be ensured.
- In the event that closure is unavoidable, the program must indicate what criteria (i.e. Governor declared snow emergency, anticipated large snowfall, etc.) that the agency will use to determine the need for closure.
- Waivers for closure must include signature of both the medical director and executive director authorizing take home doses for all clients regardless of their current status.
- That the program understands that once BSAS approved, they are empowered for the duration of that season, to implement future closings with the understanding that the Bureau must be notified within 24 hours of the closure, on the approved BSAS form.
- For agencies with multiple sites, a separate plan must be submitted for each site.
In the event that a severe weather emergency occurs when the Bureau is closed(i.e. weekends, holidays), programs previously approved have the discretion to implement plans based on the above criteria, within 48 hours via fax at 617-624-5395.
In all cases the Bureau is to be notified on the approved BSAS form.
Please contact Carolyn Castro-Donlan at (617) 624-5105 or LeNay Harper at (617) 624-5135 with questions regarding this waiver request process.
Any severe weather waiver requests held prior to this present approval are to be considered void.
This information is provided by the Bureau of Substance Abuse Services within the Department of Public Health.