Upstream Massachusetts: Virtual Program Offerings during COVID-19

COVID-19 continues to strain our healthcare system. Many agencies now face the dual challenge of reopening their doors to all patients while still providing essential COVID-19 testing and treatment services. We are grateful for the ways our partners continue to serve and protect our communities amidst the challenges posed by the pandemic.

We have been working hard to adapt our program during this moment. Below you will find details about the components of our model that are evolving, as well as agencies working with us to innovate. If you would like to learn more about how Upstream can support you during this time, please reach out. We are ready and eager to partner with you.

Our Work is Changing, Our Commitment is Not

We know that health centers are rapidly updating protocols and workflows to adapt to the new normal of healthcare delivery. In this time of change, Upstream is ready and available to support those operational shifts and help ensure patients receive best-in-class contraceptive care. Upstream has developed flexible and virtual components of our program to better support the new healthcare landscape.

What Has Changed:

  • Remote needs assessment to ensure the program fits each health center’s needs and timing
  • Virtual training options that can better adapt to your team’s schedule
  • Virtual coaching for staff as they work to enhance patient-centered counseling skills
  • Technical assistance dedicated to delivering great contraceptive care via telehealth
  • Even more training time dedicated to bias and coercion

Other essential parts of the Upstream program remain the same. Most importantly, you still work with a talented Upstream program team dedicated to your agency’s success. Your team will be there with you every step of the way — from integrating pregnancy intention screening questions and adapting workflows to support same-day access, to advising on billing, coding, stocking, and more.

First Virtual Training – Holyoke Health Center

Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Upstream has been working hard to convert our in-person training model to a “virtual” model, consisting of live Zoom sessions and self-directed eLearning work, that can be effectively delivered at a distance.

We have already conducted our first two live training sessions in Massachusetts for support staff at Holyoke Health Center, and we will conduct our third live session for clinicians at Holyoke this week. We were excited to roll out our updated curriculum for Holyoke, and are proud to report that the trainings went smoothly, with a great group of engaged participants!

A screenshot from Upstream MA’s first virtual training session with Holyoke Health Center

These live sessions are part of our new virtual training offering, which includes the self-guided eLearning courses. Once the training is completed, our partner health centers begin the technical assistance and coaching work with their dedicated Upstream Quality Improvement team.

New Health Center Partnership

Upstream is honored to welcome Fenway Health as a new health center partner! Fenway Health is a national leader in the provision of healthcare to LGBTQ+ patients. We look forward to supporting Fenway’s on-the-ground efforts and we’re excited to learn from their experience delivering inclusive, patient-centered, high-quality care to all patients.

We are excited to begin our partnership with Upstream MA and streamline the delivery of the full range of contraceptive methods to our patients. Now felt like the right time for our health center to engage in this crucial work as these essential services should continue and improve despite the challenges of the current pandemic. We look forward to delving into this partnership and strengthening the provision of affordable, comprehensive, and patient-centered contraceptive care.”

Erin Gately, Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Coordinator Obstetrics, Gynecology and Family Planning Program at Fenway Health

We remain eager to be a supportive partner in this time of need, and will continue to share resources to help our partners navigate changes to their work and to patient care. If you are interested in partnering with Upstream, please reach out to us at

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