HCN News & Notes

Sheriff Robert Garvey Honored with $20,000 Donation to CDH ED

NORTHAMPTON — Members of the Hampshire County Deputy Sheriff’s Assoc. recognized long-time Hampshire County Sheriff Robert Garvey by donating $20,000 in his honor to Cooley Dickinson Hospital’s Emergency Department in a brief naming ceremony.

The donation will be used to name an observation station inside the Emergency Department’s dedicated mental-health area.

“We had been looking for a productive way to honor retiring Sheriff Robert Garvey for his many years of service to this county,” said Maureen Callahan, treasurer of the Hampshire County Deputy Sheriff’s Assoc. “This is a lasting gift that represents the dignity, compassion, and care Sheriff Garvey has demonstrated over his decades-long career.”

After 32 years of service, Garvey did not seek re-election in November.

Callahan noted that Garvey’s successor, Patrick Cahillane, who has worked with Garvey for more than 30 years, plans to continue to advance Garvey’s mission to promote the humane custody of inmates while understanding the need for accountability and a safe, successful reintegration into the community.

“Having worked with vulnerable populations for decades, the mission and insight of both Sheriff Garvey and Sheriff Cahillane mirror Cooley Dickinson’s concern and care for individuals in our community,” Callahan said.

The mental-health area within the Emergency Department offers a calmer, safer, more controlled environment where a subset of Cooley Dickinson’s Emergency Department patients — roughly 10{06cf2b9696b159f874511d23dbc893eb1ac83014175ed30550cfff22781411e5} of the people who visit the ER each day — can be evaluated and receive treatment.

Previously, people with psychiatric complaints would go to the general Emergency Department. Due to the shortage of psychiatric beds in Massachusetts, patients — some of whom could be anxious and agitated — waited many hours, sometimes days, in Emergency Department hallways or rooms for either admission to Cooley Dickinson’s inpatient behavioral-health unit or transfer to another facility. Cooley Dickinson opened the dedicated mental-health area in 2015.