Harvard Pilgrim Steps Up to the Plate With Red Sox Partnership

By Margaret Jackson Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Harvard Pilgrim Health Care and the Boston Red Sox are teaming up to encourage fans to mask up to stay safe.

The ball club has signed a multi-year partnership agreement as health benefit provider Harvard Pilgrim’s official health and wellness partner. The Red Sox also have agreed to develop wellness and other healthcare-focused content for the Boston Globe’s distribution channels.

To kick off its partnership with the Red Sox, Harvard Pilgrim has created a public service announcement (PSA) called “Mask Up, Red Sox Nation!” The PSA spot opens with shots of an empty ballpark then cuts to Red Sox catcher Christian Vasquez saying, “This is the mask I wear to protect me,” then donning his catcher’s. After a shot of Vasquez behind the plate, the camera is back on Vasquez, putting on a cloth mask, saying, “But this one, this one protects everyone in the nation … starting right here with ours.” Photos of people wearing masks flash across the screen before the tagline “Let’s go Red Sox Nation. Wear a Mask.” concludes the spot.

The partnership with Harvard Pilgrim comes on the heels of multiple ball club members who tested positive for COVID-19, including left-handed pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez. Rodriguez recovered from COVID-19, but the viral infection caused a heart condition called myocarditis, which forced him to sit out for the rest of the season.

“Our partnerships with the Boston Red Sox and the Boston Globe are designed to provide greater awareness of health and wellness, as well as health-care access, by leveraging our combined expertise, resources and, most of all, our shared mission to be of service to our communities,” Michael Carson, president and CEO of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, said in a statement. “Together we will bring new and meaningful health- and wellness-focused events to Fenway Park, philanthropic initiatives to our communities in greatest need, and we will share important, timely and relevant health care-related content with Boston Globe readers across New England and the nation.”

Harvard Pilgrim’s network of more than 70,000 doctors and 182 hospitals serves over 3 million customers.

It’s not the first time Harvard Pilgrim has stepped up to the plate to help in the battle against COVID-19. In April, the health benefits provider contributed $52,000 to The Dimock Center to sponsor and coordinate the Boston COVID-19 Relief Meal Delivery Project. Through the program, Boston-based caterers Fresh Food Generation and Commonwealth Kitchen prepared about 600 meals weekly that were delivered to The Dimock Center, which provides health and human services to Boston’s underserved neighborhoods.

With an estimated 40% of Boston’s COVID-19 cases affecting African-American communities, the program was designed to help those most at risk for complications from the virus.

“As COVID-19 disproportionately impacts our African-American and Latino patients and families, Dimock’s work in addressing health inequities is even more pressing,” Lynne Sheridan, vice president of child and family services at The Dimock Center, said in a statement. “This is a priority and supports Dimock’s commitment to providing uninterrupted care to our community.”

Harvard Pilgrim also provided a $250,000 grant to the Boston Resiliency Fund as part of its $3 million COVID-19 relief efforts.

About the Author

Headshot for author Margaret Jackson

Margaret is an award-winning journalist who spent nearly 25 years in the newspaper industry. She has covered a variety of business topics, including residential and commercial real estate, technology, telecommunications, and cannabis.

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