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No Snow Day at Hospitals as Winter Storm Rages On

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — A major snowstorm poses challenges for everyone, but when it comes to providing critical life-saving care those challenges are magnified.

While the snow was falling and while there were cancellations up and down the Pioneer Valley, there was no snow day at Baystate Medical Center.

Baystate Health Systems employs some 10,000 people. If there’s a snowstorm, the medical center is prepared.

“We’re open for business, that’s the core of the mission, you have to be available to the community, that’s the given,” says Tom Lynch, Director of Security at Baystate Health.

Staying open and making sure no services or patient care is compromised begins with staffing, getting the people to work.

When a storm is approaching, managers work with staff to make sure they’ll get to work safely.

One of the things they do is offer space to rest or sleep if staff wants to come to work early before a storm gets too bad.

On this day for example, it’s all hands on deck in the kitchen where meals have to be prepared.

“We have to produce 5,000 to 6,000 meals a day, doesn’t matter if it’s sunny, snowy, humid, or blizzard conditions, we’re here for the patients, we’re here for our staff and that’s what we do,” says Richard Callahan, Executive Chef at Baystate Health.

Tom Lynch says employees know their responsibilities and take them very seriously especially when the going is tough.

“People are really committed to taking care of patients and it’s a remarkable thing to see,” says Lynch.


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