The New England Patriots and the Kraft family have invited a select group of vaccinated health care heroes from Mass General Brigham to be their guests at Super Bowl LV in Tampa, Florida, on Sunday, February 7. Jason Pereira, head of Security at McLean Hospital, will be representing our hospital at Raymond James Stadium.
“Last April, when our plane returned with masks from China, we never could have imagined the devastation this pandemic would cause, nor could we have dreamed of the heroic stories and achievements that have come to be as a result, especially the dedication of health care workers on the front lines and the creation of safe and effective vaccines,” said Patriots chairman and CEO Robert Kraft. “Ten months later, it’s an honor for us to celebrate these health care workers by giving them a well-deserved break for a day and an opportunity to enjoy the Super Bowl, a reality that is only made possible because of the vaccines.”
Heroic Efforts in Trying Times
Pereira has been a frontline fixture at McLean for more than four years, working with staff and patients daily. He and his team are responsible for a wide variety of duties at McLean, largely related to maintaining the safety of patients, staff, and visitors and monitoring the security and safety of McLean buildings and the property therein.
“Jason has been on the front line since the start of the pandemic,” said Andy Healy, director McLean’s Facilities Department. “He is a loyal employee who can be called on 24/7, and he deserves to be part of a historic moment in Tampa.”
He is not only a protector of people and property but also a peacemaker. His calming presence is welcomed by McLean staff when emergencies arise.
“When there’s an emergency, my team is called to ensure the safety of the staff and the patient,” said Pereira. “It’s a good thing for a patient in distress to see someone that they don’t normally see. If I see a situation heading in the wrong direction, or the patient isn’t responding well to clinical staff, I’ll step in to see whether I can get the patient to de-escalate. My officers and I are trained to do this, and we’re typically successful.”
For Pereira, part of being a protector is getting vaccinated. During a major snowstorm on December 17, 2020, he and his officers shepherded doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine to the de Marneffe Building for McLean’s first COVID-19 employee vaccine clinic. After the doses were delivered, he and his officers each sat down in a chair to get their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
“I was ready to go,” said Pereira. “As the head of security here, I try to be a role model for my team. I wanted to show them that I was willing to get vaccinated and that it’s important to get vaccinated.”
Getting vaccinated also made him eligible for a free trip to the Super Bowl. He and other vaccinated health care heroes will receive a ticket to the Super Bowl, private ground transportation in Massachusetts and Florida, air transportation to and from Tampa on the New England Patriots team plane, and other gifts.
While he says that he loves his job, Pereira is looking forward to a much-deserved break this weekend.
“This is definitely a once-in-a-lifetime deal,” he said. “I’m a New England Patriots fan, and I’m going to be able to see, in person, the quarterback I followed since I was a kid play in the Super Bowl. How could I turn that down?”
Pereira prides himself on being ready to help out at any time of day or night, readily giving out his mobile number and welcoming staff to call him. But try to resist calling him on Sunday, February 7. It might be difficult to hear him above the cheering.
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