Starting at noon Monday, residents of Northern Berkshire County will have access to a nearby emergency room. The facility will replace the ER that shut down when North Adams Regional Hospital closed in March.
The Emergency Room will be open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, but unlike its previous incarnation, it will not be attached to a full inpatient hospital. According to a spokesperson for Berkshire Health Systems, which will run the ERr, the staff will treat anyone who comes in for either critical or non-critical needs. If they need further care, they will likely be transferred to the company’s main hospital in Pittsfield or Baystate Medical Center in Springfield. Dick Alcombright is Mayor of North Adams.
“This takes a considerable amount of angst off our residents,” Alcombright says. “There will be continuing conversations now how we restore other services within the city.”
Berkshire Health Systems is in the process of buying the former North Adams hospital building. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has launched a study into the longterm health needs of the region, and whether re-opening a hospital there is sustainable.