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Brigham and Women's Hospital is open and seeing patients. All scheduled appointments and procedures will happen as planned on Monday, July 22.

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Brigham and Women's Hospital Backup Child Care Center

Mass General Brigham Healthcare Center (Chestnut Hill)
850 Boylston Street (Rte 9 East) Suite 210
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
Phone: 617-732-9543
Fax: 617-732-9544

Site Director: Sarah Towle, MEd
Office: 617-732-9540

To make a reservation, please call the main Center number, 617-732-9543.

Information about the BWH Backup Child Care Center

For the most up-to-date information about the Backup Child Care Center visit our page on the Mass General Brigham website.

The BWH Backup Child Care Center provides emergency backup child care for benefits-eligible employees of BWH, BWFH, DFCI and the patients* of these institutions. Care is provided for Infant, Toddler, Preschool and School-age children up through 12 years old.

Our mission is to provide a safe, nurturing, learning environment for the children in our care. Our curriculum has been designed to enhance the social, emotional, intellectual, and physical growth of each child.

*BWH, BWFH, and DFCI patient families may utilize the BWH Backup Center for their children when a family member is attending an appointment or receiving hospital services on location at BWH, BWFH, or DFCI.

Developmentally appropriate curricula are planned daily, as well as free choice exploration of materials. Self-expression is encouraged through music, art, and dramatic play experiences. The Center uses guidelines established by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) to determine developmental appropriateness for all levels of care provided.

  • The Backup Center cannot care for children who are ill.
  • The Backup Center maintains a nut-free environment.

The BWH Backup Child Care Center is managed by Mass General Brigham Child Care Services, a department of Human Resources. The Director of the Center reports to the Director of Child Care Services. The Director is responsible for daily administration of the center, including supervision of the staff and program. The Director and Education Coordinator oversee the Teachers to ensure consistency in programming.

The Center is licensed by the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care (EEC).


Located at 850 Boylston Street, Route 9 East, the BWH Backup Child Care Center is a state-of-the-art facility designed to meet the needs of Infant, Toddler, Preschool, and School-age children.

Families should enter from the parking lot; door is at the far right end of the 850 Boylston Street building.

The 1,180 square foot facility features a large dramatic play loft, sensory tables and fully equipped classrooms with many manipulatives and games for all ages. Children are given the opportunity to participate in many art experiences and to venture outside on walks or to the local playgrounds.

Our classrooms are staffed by Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) certified Teachers who have the knowledge and expertise to help families, and especially children, during their time at the Backup Center.

Click here to download the BWH Backup Center Parent Handbook

Click here to download our Holiday Closure Calendar


Hours are Monday through Friday, from 6:30am to 5:45pm.

The tuition rate for the Backup Center is $8 per hour. A two-hour minimum is required for all reservations.

For families with three (3) or more children scheduled to attend the program at the same time, the rate is $20 per hour for the sibling grouping.

Limits on Use

Each child may use the BWH Backup Child Care Center for up to 20 days per fiscal year; fiscal year runs October 1st through September 30th.


The BWH Backup Center must adhere to Massachusetts State regulations regarding group sizes, composition for mixed age groupings and adult to child ratios; with this, the following are key points with regard to availability:

  • Generally speaking, there is availability during the 45 weeks per year when Vacation Club Programming is not in session.
  • During the 7 weeks per year when Vacation Club programming is in session (February, April, June, August, December), enrollment fills quickly, resulting in waitlists. Please see Vacation Club section below for more details about Club weeks.
  • During high-use days (e.g. school holidays, snow days) availability may be limited if large numbers of families are seeking care on a high-use day.
  • The weeks between the end of June Vacation Club and the start of August Vacation Club, as well as the week prior to the Boston area school years’ commencing (typically the first week of September), School Age programming can and does fill quickly.

The Backup Center does its very best to accommodate all requests for reservations yet it is important to know that there will sometimes be limitations to the days and times available for care; in these instances, the program will suggest additional resources for backup care, such as Backup Care or the Child Care Information and Referral services offered by Mass General Brigham EAP.

Severe Weather and Emergency Procedures

Mass General Brigham hospitals are always open and the Mass General Brigham Child Care Centers will do everything possible to remain open, as well.

In the case of snow, severe weather conditions, or other 'public safety' emergencies, should there be public transportation restrictions or shut-downs, or restrictions or shut-downs to the Mass General Brigham shuttle service, the Centers may be required to alter program operations.

To receive information regarding program operating status and information related to weather emergencies, please dial the main number 617-732-9543.

Employees may also call the BWH Employee Emergency Announcement Line at 800-343-7036 for BWH notifications and updates.

In the case of anticipated school closure due to snow or weather, reservations will be taken starting 24 hours in advance.


Parents can reserve care for Infant, Toddler, Preschool and School Age children up through 12 years of age. The Center also is open to the children and siblings of BWH, BWFH and DFCI patients; patient families are eligible to use the program only while attending an appointment at one of these institutions.

Reservations for care can be made by calling the Center Monday through Friday from 6:30am to 5:45pm, or by leaving a voice message after hours on 617-732-9543.

Reservations may be made up to one month prior to the date care is needed as well as on the day that care is needed.

Cancellation Policy

  • If a reservation is made and must be canceled, it must be done so by telephone (617-732-9543) no later than 6:30am of the day reserved so that waitlisted families can be contacted and served in a timely fashion.
  • Reservations may not be canceled by email. Reservations that are not canceled by phone by 6:30am of day reserved, or that are canceled by email, will result in a cancellation fee of $40 per child.

The Backup Center's mission is to provide backup care for the maximum number of children possible for busy, working families; the reservation cancellation policy allows our Backup programs to be more efficient in responding to enrollment inquiries and care needs of our employee and patient families.

Click here to download the Registration Materials Packet. This packet includes Registration and Emergency Consent, Photo Consent, Topical Ointment Release and Employee Payroll Deduction Authorization Form.

Vacation Club

Working parents with school age children may face child care challenges when school is not in session, such as school vacation weeks and summer weeks; here is where Vacation Club comes to the rescue!

The BWH Backup Center's mission in support of working families with school age children is to offer a fun-filled time for School Age children.

Vacation Club programming includes planned activities and field trips, unique and exciting experiences, and the camaraderie that develops in a group of children as time goes on.

Vacation Club occurs seven weeks throughout the year:

  • One week each in February, April, and December, designed to coincide with the Brookline and Boston Public schools vacation weeks.
  • One or Two weeks at the end of June, designed to coincide with the period of time when school is out and traditional summer camps have not yet started.
  • Two weeks at the end of August, designed to coincide with the period of time when traditional summer camps have ended and school has not yet begun.
  • Club hours are 7:30am - 5:30pm.
  • Tuition is prepaid and non-refundable: $80 per day, per child; discount for full week Club enrollment.
  • Vacation Club may be utilized by benefits-eligible BWH, BWFH and DFCI employees only.

All User e-mails will be sent out in advance alerting employees as to registration, fees, and the activities planned for each club.

Registration for Vacation Club Weeks opens 4 weeks in advance of the starting date of the Club.

Only benefits-eligible employees of BWH, BWFH and DFCI may utilize Vacation Club.

Please note:

  • Reservations during Vacation Club weeks are outside of the 20 day per fiscal year limit on use.
  • Vacation Club programming is designed for School Age children; there may be limited availability for Preschool and Toddler age children if School Age enrollment is not at capacity and if staffing allows.
  • Infant care is not provided during Vacation Club weeks.
  • Reservations during Vacation Club weeks require pre-payment for all ages and fees are non-refundable;

Scheduled activities are subject to change due to weather or unforeseen circumstance. To make a reservation, please call the main Center number, 617-732-9543.

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