No Snow Day at Hospitals as Winter Storm Rages On

WX hospitals

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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  • walterc

    Big deal! They have to go to and from work. WOW! What heroes. You ought to do a story on the real unsung heroes, the men and women of Cooley Dickenson’s Visiting Nurse Service. While everyone was urged to stay off the roads today, my girlfriend was in her car traveling to multiple house, mostly on unplowed streets and driveways that had 12 inches of snow in them, bringing her service as a visiting nurse to those that need her every day. Want to know about those that have to be there no matter the weather? Then try doing a story on the Visiting Nurse Service of Cooley Dickenson, heroes that don’t know what it’s like to stay home during a snow storm, and who never considered not going to work because of bad weather, no matter what the condition of the roads.

  • my3boys

    Wow comnents like thay should b kept to yourself !!! Maybe there thinking the same way about u Walterc your lady dont have to travel she chose to … If shes a rn or lpn she could work at a place like Baystate always hiring so again she chooses to travel!

    • walterc

      No, she works for Cooley because it’s a better place to work. And she is a visiting nurse so it’s part of her job. She is good at it and she loves it. The best nurses work for Cooley. Baystate is a revolving door.

      And talk about keeping comments to yourself – you might want to work on your writing skills. It’s pretty embarrassing when someone can’t spell, writes like they are texting, and doesn’t even know when to use there or their.

  • my3boys

    Oh im sorry i mispelled one word. And any nurse ,Dr, and emts exspecially no matter where they work give there all to help the sick,

    • walterc

      Actually it was far more than your spelling. Here’s a tip – because they sound alike the words there and their are often used improperly. A good way to remember the difference is: The place “here” with a T is “there”. While “there” refers to a place, “their” means belonging to them. For example, Their van was destroyed in the accident. In your case that would mean your sentence should read “no matter where they work they give their all to help the sick.”

  • JessCara413

    Oh my goodness! All that negative insulting conversation only. The point of the article was give some recognition to the staff at Baystate and letting people in our community know that they can go there for care come rain or come shine. The visiting nurses in our community have a very important and challenging job for the same reason; they are there to serve the ill not matter the weather conditions. However I do agree that an article could be written to recognize visiting nurses and the importance of their duties. I hope you all stay warm out there! Be well and be kind!