Physician Pens History of North Adams Regional Hospital

NORTH ADAMS — Dr. Paul Donovan, a long-time practicing physician in North Adams, has written and published the first of a three-part series on the history of North Adams Regional Hospital (NARH).
“I was moved to write this because, on a very personal level, I worked at the hospital for 22 years, and I felt a deep sense of loyalty to my fellow physicians and employees, the patients and their families we treated, and the institution itself,” Donovan said. “On a historical level, unfortunately, the hospital no longer exists, and I did not want its 129 years of existence to be lost and unrecorded.”
The hospital closed in March 2014 after filing for bankruptcy.
Part one of the series covers the years 1882 to 1910. 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. Part one concludes with a major reorganization in 1909-10 due to financial difficulties.
Part two will cover the years 1910 to 1955, and part three will cover 1955 to 2014. They are expected to be published in 2016 and 2017, respectively.
Donovan is an emergency-medicine and sports-medicine specialist practicing in North Adams and Bennington, Vt. He was a member of the NARH medical staff for 25 years and served as medical staff president from 2008 to 2010, and as director of the NARH Emergency Department.
“This has been a major undertaking for me in terms of time spent researching this important historical work, in light of maintaining a full-time medical practice and family obligations,” Donovan said. “I would like to thank the North Adams Historical Society and the North Adams Public Library for their help in this venture.”
The book can be purchased on www.blurb.com; search for ‘North Adams Regional Hospital.’ It will be available at local bookstores starting in July. Comments on the work are welcomed; e-mail the author at emsportmed2015@gmail.com.