One of the key factors that distinguish a thriving community is its ability to deliver excellent medical care to every resident and visitor who walks through the doors of its hospitals.
For most families, the list of basic needs is exceptionally short, with health care at the very top. If the character of a community is defined by many factors, how well it answers the health care needs of its people is surely one of the most important.
Meeting and exceeding this expectation is what guides - and drives - BHS every day. Over the last several years, the landscape of health care policy has failed to improve. Federal reimbursement for Medicare, Medicaid and even private health insurance cover only a fraction of the actual cost of services. And more people than ever before now depend on their community hospitals to provide basic medical care that, less than a generation ago, was obtained from doctors in private practice. The role and responsibilities of BHS and its affiliates to the people and families of this community has increased significantly.
But despite the relentless challenges to health care, BHS has moved ahead with transformations that reflect the dynamic world of health care and that also meet the growing needs of our community. Some of the changes are immediately visible to a large segment of our community. For example, we've invested heavily in building a larger Emergency Department because the number of people who depend on the ED for both emergency and basic health care has risen exponentially. We've also completed construction on eight new Operating Rooms and a new laboratory - all equipped with the most advanced technology available anywhere - so that our community has access to the highest level of services.
Less visible is our investment in recruiting new physicians, in primary care and all specialty areas, so that individuals facing medical issues can turn to their own community healthcare system and not travel elsewhere at what can be one of the most difficult times of their lives. These are the kinds of services that, thankfully, will not impact many individuals. Nonetheless, for the people in our region this year who will suffer a significant healthcare issue, having access to a physician staff composed of highly trained and experienced medical practitioners may be one of the most valuable benefits of living in the Berkshires.
BHS is able to provide the best for our community in large part because of you. Our patients understand the critical role they play in maintaining the viability of our health care system. Each time you come to us for routine medical care such as CT scans, an MRI or other diagnostic or screening services, your support enables us to provide the latest in technology, to recruit the most talented physicians, and to insure that we can offer the most advanced medical care if you or a loved one is in need.
We are proud of our caregivers, the broad range of our health care services, and the standing of BHS in the overall success of the Berkshire community. We hope this online resource serves as an efficient means to help you learn more about our health care services, access physicians, and save important contacts and information. Thanks for visiting.
David E. Phelps
CEO, Berkshire Health Systems