Austen Riggs Center COVID-19 Response

COVID-19 Alerts From the Austen Riggs Center.

There are numerous mental health resources related to COVID-19. Here are some that you may find helpful.   The organizations and outlets listed are among those providing accurate and updated information about COVID-19.

Dr. Nils Daulaire presented a Pandemics 101 webinar virtually. Click here to watch now.


Updated 10/27/20

Dear members of the Austen Riggs Center Community:   

I am writing today to report that a member of our staff tested positive for COVID-19. In line with our safety protocols, the staff member will remain in isolation and off campus until medically cleared ​to return. 

All patients and staff have been notified and contact tracing for the staff member's interactions at Riggs was done for the period beginning two days prior to the onset of ​COVID-19 symptoms. Two patients and two staff were identified as having potential low-risk exposures. Their exposure risk is low enough that these patients and staff do not meet Centers for Disease Control (CDC) criteria for quarantine. They are, however, being asked to remain vigilant as they self-monitor and pursue testing out of an abundance of caution.

Since the pandemic began last spring, we have been fortunate to have no patients test positive for COVID-19. We believe our safety protocols have played a vital part in that outcome. With the onset of cold weather and the resurgence of the virus throughout the country, we remain even more vigilant in safeguarding the Riggs community. To that end, we will soon be instituting weekly COVID testing for patients and staff on campus. In addition, we are requiring all patients and staff to obtain flu shots unless they have a documented medical reason not to do so.

The next several months will continue to pose significant challenges for us all, and I remain grateful for your understanding and support as we meet those challenges.

Be well,   

Eric M. Plakun, MD   
Medical Director/CEO   


Contact Information: 

Family members: Your social worker is your primary contact person. If that person is not available, please call the social work administrative assistant, Jessi Meagher, at 413.931.5202. 

Referring clinicians: Please call 1.800.517.4447.  

Media inquiries: Please call our Communications Office at 413.931.5245.  


Archived Updates

2020.09.28 COVID-19 Update
2020.08.04 COVID-19 Update
COVID-19 Update from the Medical Director/CEO of Austen Riggs - June 2020
2020.05.13 COVID-19 Update
COVID-19 Update from the Medical Director/CEO of Austen Riggs - April 2020
2020.04.24 COVID-19 Update
2020.04.17 COVID-19 Update
2020.04.01 COVID-19 Update
2020.03.24 COVID-19 Update
2020.03.20 COVID-19 Update
2020.03.17 COVID-19 Update

Austen Riggs Center Emails and Text Messages (SMS) Subscription Service for COVID-19 Updates

The Austen Riggs Center (Riggs) is offering this email and text subscription service solely for the purpose of sharing Riggs COVID-19 related alerts. Please enter the information below and select your communications preferences. Learn more about this service here: www.austenriggs.org/COVID19-updates.