SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Celebrating 30 years of advancing care and enhancing lives Friday for a Springfield neighborhood health center.

A proud night for the Community Advisory board at Baystate Mason Square Neighborhood Health Center. The board celebrating 30 years of providing direct patient care and high-quality services to its communities.

The neighborhood health center was created in 1971 to help prevent teen pregnancy among African American teenagers. The health center making great strides since Baystate took over in 1993, naming it after Springfield’s first Black philanthropist and entrepreneur, Primus Mason.

Physician at the center, Andrew Balder, hopes to offer even more services, “Additional services so people don’t have to travel, even up to the northwest corner of Springfield and taking advantage of all the connectivity we need to develop, our colleagues are trying to solve the digital divide in Springfield.”

There were also awards for eight doctors who finished their four-year residency here. The four-year residency was a training program for doctors that received their degrees but needed their licenses.

Jessica Urso, one of the graduating doctors told 22News this program has prepared her for her next chapter. to become a pediatrician. “I wanted to be able to learn as much as I could in these four years and take care of a wide variety of patients and the experience at Mason Square specifically, there is a wide variety of things you’re going to see and have access to, so as a new doctor this was a great place to start and get my feet wet.”

Eight more resident doctors will also come in at the end of June.