HCN News & Notes

Public Health Council Approves Baystate Acquisition of Noble Hospital

WESTFIELD — The Massachusetts Public Health Council unanimously approved Baystate Health’s acquisition of Noble Hospital in Westfield Wednesday.

“That’s a step forward,” Ben Craft, director of Public Affairs for Baystate Health, told HCN. “We continue our due diligence and we hope to finalize the process of Noble joining Baystate Health in the next several weeks.”

Because that process is still underway, Craft said, Baystate officials are limited in what they can say about the next steps. “We’re committed to a healthy long-term future for Noble and the Westfield community. As we move forward, we’ll certainly share more details as soon as we can.”

Noble would become the fifth full-service, acute-care hospital in the Baystate system, following the acquisitions of Franklin Medical Center in Greenfield in 1986, Mary Lane Hospital in Ware in 1991, and Wing Memorial Hospital in 2014.

Baystate and Noble already collaborate in many areas, including lab services, heart and vascular care, women’s services, and neurology. Meanwhile, Noble has become a more attractive target for Baystate in recent years, increasing its number of primary-care physicians from one to 16, and unveiling a renovated patient wing, a new Comprehensive Primary Care Office building, a new Noble Walk-In Express Care service next door that sees some 1,100 patients monthly, a urology practice, new orthopedic offices, and comprehensive breast-cancer services with a full-time breast surgeon.