Coverage of NCCC Substance Abuse Treatment Resolutions

In recent months, members of the North County Cares Coalition have successfully spread the word throughout North County that substance abuse treatment services need to be improved. Members have called on local officials to support NCCC in its efforts to enhance a range of addiction services.

See a selection of news coverage:

North Adams Council Backs Resolution Calling for Detox Center

http://www.iberkshires.com/storyOld/52269/North-Adams-Council-Backs-Resolution-Calling-for-Detox-Center.html?source=most_read

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The City Council on Tuesday approved 8-1 a citizens’ petition calling on Berkshire Health Systems to open a center for detoxification and substance abuse recovery.

Like much of the nation, the city has seen a dramatic increase in opioid abuse. The rate of those seeking treatment in North Adams has jumped from about 42 in 2005 to nearly 200 in 2014. The coalition says the need for opioid treatment in North County is critical.

Adams Selectmen Endorse Resolution Calling for Detox Center

http://www.iberkshires.com/story/52369/Adams-Selectmen-Endorse-Resolution-Calling-for-Detox-Center.html

ADAMS, Mass. — The Selectmen unanimously endorsed a resolution written by the North County Cares Coalition asking state officials and Berkshire Health Systems to open a facility for detoxification and substance abuse recovery in North Adams. ….

Lipa said the town of Adams has been affected by the opioid crisis and said in 2014 there were 207 Adams admissions at the hospital for detoxification treatment, 39.6 percent of these cases were caused by heroin

“That is striking and we are seeing the same kind of numbers in North Adams,” he said. “The number of people actually seeking opioid addiction treatment has increased 376 percent since 2005. It is a very serious problem.”

Williamstown Adopts Resolution on Opioid Addiction Services

http://www.iberkshires.com/story/52778/Williamstown-Adopts-Resolution-on-Opioid-Addiction-Services.html

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Board of Selectmen on Monday approved a resolution calling on Berkshire Health Systems and state officials to better serve North County residents suffering from opioid addiction. …

“Berkshire Health Systems has given us a lot in North County, but other things, they keep in Pittsfield, which is a hardship for North Adams and the hill towns,” Vankin said. “Maybe not for us, but you have to think of the rest of the community. If you live in South Williamstown, it’s not that hard to get to BMC. But if you live on Florida Mountain, it’s hard enough to get down to North Adams, let alone Pittsfield.”

Video of North Adams Public Safety Committee

The North Adams City Council Public Safety Committee met June 6 to discussed the proposed resolution the North County Cares Coalition to provide comprehensive substance abuse services in North County.

 

 

Berkshire Eagle column: Facts back North Adams hospital

Maynard Seider, emeritus professor of sociology at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, writes a strong rebuttal to the Eagle’s September editorial declaring that North Adams would never get a full-service hospital.

“It’s important to remember that the hospital was doing fine, but the careless empire-building of Northern Berkshire Healthcare brought down the hospital that local residents sorely needed,” Seider writes.

Read the full column here: http://www.berkshireeagle.com/columnists/ci_29056120/column-facts-back-north-adams-hospital

New Berkshire Eagle letter: Realities argue for full-service hospital in North Adams

NCCC member George Pouridas this past weekend had a letter to the Berkshire Eagle published about returning inpatient beds to North Adams. This is our second letter in two weeks!

“The reality is the community has a need for inpatient services. Market demand shows a need for 18-21 beds for acute inpatient medical services and 11-12 beds for inpatient behavioral health and substance abuse services,” George writes. “The reality is obstetric services are the most often-cited need for inpatient care in North County, and the nearly 1,100 babies born in North Adams in the most recently reviewed years support that claim.

Read the entire letter here: http://www.berkshireeagle.com/letters/ci_28919878/letter-realities-argue-full-service-hospital-north-adams

North County Cares Coalition to host a former North Adams Regional Hospital doctor to discuss book on history of NARH

When:    Tuesday, Sept. 29 at 7 p.m.

Where: American Legion Post 125, 91 American Legion Drive, North Adams, MA

What: A discussion and book signing of “North Adams Regional Hospital: A Historical Perspective,” by Dr. Paul Donovan

In 1882, a catastrophic train accident galvanized a small group of North Adams residents to initiate the concept of a hospital, which was built with private donations and opened in March 1885, according to research by longtime North Adams Regional Hospital physician Dr. Paul Donovan. Before it closed abruptly in 2014, NARH served 37,000 residents in Northern Berkshire County, southern Vermont and eastern New York.

Dr. Donovan’s book, “North Adams Regional Hospital: A Historical Perspective,” will be featured at this Tuesday’s meeting of the North County Cares Coalition. The entire history will be told by Dr. Donovan in a three-part series. Part one covers the years 1882-1910 and concludes with major hospital reorganization in 1909-1910 due to financial difficulties. Part two will cover the years 1910 to 1955 and part three from 1955 to 2014. The second and third parts are expected to be published in 2016 and 2017.

Dr. Donovan was a physician at North Adams Regional Hospital from 1989-2014. He was previously Director of Emergency Services from 1991 to 1993 and 2000-2001, and president of the medical staff from 2008 to 2010. He specializes now in emergency and sports medicine, practicing in North Adams and Bennington, VT.

The North County Cares Coalition is an alliance of concerned residents, health and community advocates that was formed last year to restore inpatient beds at what is now the Northern Berkshire Campus of Berkshire Medical Center. We want a real hospital in Northern Berkshire County.

You can watch Stroudwater Report meeting online

We would encourage you not only to read the Stroudwater Report on the closure of North Adams Regional Hospital, but also watch the public meeting held on the report about a year ago. It was an important meeting on the most pressing topic that Northern Berkshire County residents face. Click the link below to watch on Northern Berkshire Community Television’s website.

http://www.webcast.nbctc.org/shows/Stroudwater Report/2014/Sep 23 Stroudwater Meeting.html

Mayoral candidates forum available online

Our Sept. 15 mayoral candidates forum is available to watch on NBCTC online. Click the link: http://www.webcast.nbctc.org/shows/North%20Adams%20Elections/2015/Sep%2015%20Mayoral%20Debate.html

Also check out this Letter to the Editor by Jim Lipa, who responds to the Berkshire Eagle’s editorial: http://goo.gl/KJiFHJ

“Health care is a basic human right,” Lipa writes. “The challenge we face is how to deliver quality health care in an environment where profits are more important than people.”

Mayoral candidates talk hospital, health care, economy at NCCC forum

It was standing room only for a forum on health care and the economy Tuesday night. Residents packed American Legion Post 125 to hear from the three North Adams mayoral candidates — incumbent Richard Alcombright and challengers John Barrett III and Eric Rudd. They fielded questions from residents and a North County Cares Coalition panel on the closure and restoration of North Adams Regional Hospital, along with the future of health care and the economy in Northern Berkshire County.

IMG_0093 IMG_0091 (2)IMG_0102  IMG_0127

Check out the media coverage of the event:

North Adams Mayoral Candidates Debate Health Care, Hospital Closing by Tammy Daniels at iBerkshires.com

North Adams Mayoral Candidates Debate Healthcare by Jim Levulis at WAMC Northeast Public Radio

 

NCCC hosting candidates forum Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015

M E D I A  A D V I S O R Y

For Immediate Release                                                Contact: Jim Lipa 413-281-6637

Date: Sept. 11, 2015                                                                 Richard Dassatti 413-663-4128

North County Cares Coalition to Host a North Adams Mayoral Candidates Forum at the American Legion on the Future of Health Care and the Economy in Northern Berkshire County.

When:    Tuesday, Sept. 15 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Where: American Legion Post 125, 91 American Legion Drive, North Adams, MA

What: “Healthcare & the Road to a Healthy Economy,” hosted by the North County Cares Coalition

Since the former North Adams Regional Hospital abruptly closed on March 28, 2014, residents in Northern Berkshire County have been anxiously awaiting answers about the future of the region’s health care and its economy. On Tuesday night, for the first time since the closure, residents will have a chance to hear from candidates in a mayoral election. Richard Alcombright, John Barrett III and Eric Rudd will take questions from a panel of residents and from the audience during a forum moderated by Adams Town Moderator Ed Driscoll.

When the hospital shut down last year, its closure sent ripples throughout the region. More than 37,000 people lost access to a full-service hospital, hundreds lost their jobs and dozens of businesses were negatively impacted. Join us on Tuesday night to learn how the candidates plan to leader Northern Berkshire County residents to a healthy and prosperous future.

The North County Cares Coalition is an alliance of concerned residents, health and community advocates that was formed last year to restore inpatient beds at what is now the Northern Berkshire Campus of Berkshire Medical Center. We want a real hospital in Northern Berkshire County.