THERE’S A LOT OF EXCITEMENT IN THE AIR AT HOLYOKE MEDICAL CENTER.
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Staff and community members alike are anticipating the improvements that will be made possible by Care. Community. Commitment. The Campaign for Holyoke Medical Center. The campaign seeks to raise $3 million to fund a new emergency department, much-needed additional outpatient-care space, and the purchase of cutting-edge diagnostic and surgical technologies.
“Being an attorney in Holyoke and a resident, I know that the medical center is critical to the health of the city and the region,” says Peter Connor, chairman of the campaign committee. Over the past 15 years, Connor has served on the board of directors for both the medical center and its parent organization, Valley Health Systems. “The medical center is not only important for community members, but also for employers,” he says. “If an employee is hurt or becomes ill, it’s vital that there’s an excellent hospital nearby.”
The jewel of the expansion will be a new state-of-the-art emergency department. It will be more than double the size of the existing ED, enabling the hospital to better accommodate the 45,000 patients who rely on Holyoke Medical Center for emergency care each year. This new 22,000-square-foot facility will reduce wait times and provide 40 private treatment areas, 12 of which will be dedicated to behavioral health.
Connor remembers the time his wife developed a potentially life-threatening issue after a fall. “She received a quick diagnosis and excellent treatment,” he says, “but it became clear to me that a modern ED that can comfortably accommodate the number of patients who need it is fundamental to the continuing success of our community hospital.”
For more than two decades, the Board of Directors, hospital volunteers, staff and management have hoped to build a new ED. “To see it actually being built now is thrilling,” says Connor.
Above the new ED, a new 20,000-square-foot outpatient facility will house Weight Management, General Surgery, Specialty Surgery and Gastroenterology offices. All these services will have much-needed additional space once they move.
In addition to new patient-treatment spaces, the campaign will fund new technologies such as state-of-the-art MRI, computerized tomography and specialty surgical equipment.
Though just launched this past fall, the capital campaign has already made significant progress toward its goal. Connor points with gratitude to generous donations received from Alice Smith and the Holyoke Hospital Auxiliary Association.
As Connor reflects on the campaign’s name, Care. Community. Commitment., he says: “Those words sum up the feeling of the committee well. Holyoke Medical Center definitely shows these qualities in its daily work. The hospital’s acknowledged success delivering care at lesser cost to all economic levels of the community is clear. As we work hard to reach our goal of $3 million, the campaign is asking for those same qualities and consideration from the community. HMC has a great story to tell and with the new additions the campaign will make possible, it will be able to remain a strong community resource to all area residents.”
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