Introducing Occupational Health Services at Tufts University

Message from Michael W. Howard, Executive Vice President

Dear members of the Tufts community,

I am delighted to announce that Tufts University is creating on-site, university-wide Occupational Health Services (OHS) to promote safety in the workplace for all faculty, staff, and postdoctoral scholars. OHS will provide convenient access to services such as vaccinations, medical clearances, and treatment of work-related injuries and illnesses.

Co-sponsored by the Office of the Vice Provost for Research and Human Resources, Tufts OHS was developed in response to complexities and risks in the university’s processes exposed during the COVID-19 pandemic. A year-long needs assessment was conducted by the Occupational & Environmental Health Network (OEHN), a leading national firm specializing in occupational and environmental medicine. The study involved more than 80 stakeholders from all campuses and revealed the need to establish streamlined and comprehensive occupational health services to serve the needs of faculty, staff, and postdoctoral scholars in all areas of the university, including research.

Tufts OHS will provide:

  • A single phone number and department to call with occupational health questions.
  • Access to trusted professional medical personnel, available on-site.
  • Consistent and clear protocols for where to go for treatment if injured at work, how to manage a work-related injury claim, and how to return to work quickly and safely.
  • Convenient access to no-cost vaccinations to protect against exposures in the workplace.
  • Enhanced preventative services for people working in laboratories and with animals.
  • Standardized responses to laboratory exposures.
  • The ability to identify areas of high risk in the workplace and laboratory settings.
  • Best practices in health and safety services.

Tufts OHS will open in January 2022 on the Medford/Somerville campus and be co-located with Marathon Health in the Steve Tisch Sports and Fitness Center. Marathon Health will continue to provide primary/urgent care, health coaching, wellness programs, and COVID response support.

A location, to be announced at a later date, will open on the Boston Health Sciences campus in mid to late 2022, followed by expansion of existing services on the Grafton campus in 2023. Initial efforts are underway for these campuses to include rabies vaccinations onsite in Grafton, updating Hepatitis B vaccinations and Tuberculosis screening at TUSDM, and standardizing post-exposure protocols for researchers.

A special thanks to all who contributed to the vision for Tufts OHS and who have worked countless hours to bring it to fruition.

Best wishes,

Michael W. Howard, Executive Vice President