Community members demand access to birthing center at Holyoke Medical

Hampden County

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – In Holyoke, a coalition of community members and advocates held a standout demanding access to a birthing center near the Holyoke Medical Center.

This standout was following the state Department of Public Health determined that the birthing center at Holyoke Medical Center is “necessary for preserving access and health status within the Hospital’s service area.”

Holyoke Medical Center has proposed plans to discontinue the use of its 13-bed Obstetrics service and 10-bassinet “Well Infant Nursery” by this October.

22News spoke with Lhea Destromp, a mother who went to the rally with her daughters, who were all born at the Holyoke Medical Center.

“There are families that really don’t have the resources that we do–including transportation and they really rely on the services here at the Holyoke Medical Center.”

Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse also attended the event to show support. The state is requiring that the Holyoke Medical Center will prepare a plan that details how access to inpatient maternity beds and bassinets will be maintained for residents.

The plan must be submitted to the DPH by next week. 22News reached out to Holyoke Medical Center for a statement but has not received a response as of news-time.

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