Bookmark and Share


Holyoke Medical Center earns national award

Highlighting its nationally recognized achievements in patient safety and quality, Holyoke Medical Center was named a Top General Hospital nationally by the Leapfrog Group. Acknowledged as one of the most competitive awards American hospitals can receive, the Top Hospital designation is bestowed by the Leapfrog Group, a national watchdog organization of employers and other purchasers widely acknowledged as the toughest standard-setters for health care safety and quality.

“Holyoke Medical Center is proud to once again accept the Top General Hospital award from the Leapfrog Group. With only 29 hospitals receiving this distinction nationally, it speaks volumes about our amazing team members. It is through their dedicated work and devotion to providing the best care and the safest environment for our patients that we receive this recognition,” said Spiros Hatiras, president and CEO of Holyoke Medical Center and Valley Health Systems.

Over 2,200 hospitals were considered for the award. Among those, Holyoke Medical Center received a Top General distinction. A total of 105 hospitals were selected as Top Hospitals, including 29 in the general hospital category.

The quality of patient care across many areas of hospital performance is considered in establishing the qualifications for the award, including infection rates, practices for safer surgery, maternity care, and the hospital’s capacity to prevent medication errors. The rigorous standards are defined in each year’s Top Hospital Methodology.

“Being recognized as a Top Hospital is an extraordinary feat and we are honored to recognize Holyoke Medical Center this year,” said Leah Binder, president and CEO of the Leapfrog Group. “Despite the extraordinary pressure and strain of the COVID-19 pandemic, Holyoke Medical Center has demonstrated an unwavering dedication to patients and to their community. We congratulate the board, staff and clinicians whose efforts made this honor possible.”

To qualify for the Top Hospitals distinction, hospitals must rank top


Holyoke Medical Center was named a Top General Hospital nationally by The Leapfrog Group. Here, the HMC Quality Team.


among peers on the Leapfrog Hospital Survey, which assesses hospital performance on the highest standards for quality and patient safety, and achieve top performance in its category. To see the full list of institutions honored as 2020 Top Hospitals, go to the website, leapfroggroup. org/tophospitals.

Holyoke Medical Center also received the Top General Hospital recognition from The Leapfrog Group in 2016 and 2014.

Liberty Mutual helps Square One

Liberty Mutual Insurance is the latest corporation to lend its support to Square One’s Campaign for Healthy Kids — a multiyear fund development initiative focused on the agency’s commitment to providing healthy meals, physical fitness, social-emotional well-being, and a healthy learning environment.

The $3,000 gift came as Square One recently expanded its early education program to include full-day remote learning support for children in kindergarten through grade five, in addition to its traditional preschool classrooms, family child care offerings, and family support services.

“The vital services the Square One team provide to the community on a daily basis have taken on a whole new level of importance during this unprecedented time,” said Liberty Mutual Insurance contact center operations associate Beth Green. “Early education is one of the most effective ways to improve a child’s long-term security and well-being and the services offered by Square One are core to Liberty Mutual’ s values of being there for people when they need us most. We are honored to help them fulfill their commitment to provide high-quality early education and a safe and healthy community for Springfield’s children.”

“Having the support of our business community is absolutely vital to our success in supporting children and families,” said Kristine Allard, vice president of development and communication at Square One. “We are so grateful to Liberty Mutual for recognizing the importance of our work and the need to support us financially.”

“The past few months have greatly reinforced the demand for our programs and services,” Allard said. “With that growing demand and the unanticipated COVID-related expenses — including providing full-day support during remote learning — we have a tremendous need to expand our donor base.”

Square One currently provides early learning services to over 500 infants, toddlers and school-age children each day; and family support services to 1,500 families each year, as they work to overcome the significant challenges in their lives.

To make a donation, text ABC123 to 44-321, visit, or contact Allard at

Bank supports clubs’ dinner

Community Bank N.A. proudly supported the Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield this Thanksgiving by partnering with the nonprofit to help provide 174 Thanksgiving take-out dinners for its youth and their families. The packaged dinners included turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes, stuffing, buttered corn and apple pie.

“For so many of these children this was the only Thanksgiving dinner they will have this year,” Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield Executive Director Vincent Borello said. “On behalf of the children, parents, staff and board of directors I want to thank Community Bank for stepping up to support our event.”

“We’re dedicated to helping our community through these challenging times and we were thrilled to support Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield,” said Diane Dunkerly, Community Bank commercial banking officer. “Supporting our neighbors by giving back to the communities we serve, work and live in is part of our mission and we are honored to give back to such a deserving organization, especially around the holidays.”

SkinCateringopens atTowerSquare

SkinCatering, an all-natural skincare brand and day spa, has announced its relocation to the first floor inside Tower Square downtown.

The women-owned business produces its own line of all-natural skincare, in addition to offering a variety of high-end spa services. SkinCatering uses the highest- quality ingredients and provides effective, cruelty- free skin care products without the use of harmful chemicals. They are grounded in research and love developing advanced clean beauty products that support the evolving needs of their clients.

“Tower Square has a history of being a hub of activity for Springfield, and we’re very excited to be a major part of why people are coming back into the city,” said chief visionary officer and owner Leanne Sedlak.

SkinCatering has memberships and packages with discounts. They offer a variety of services such as massages, body wraps, waxing, reiki, facials, an infrared sauna and more.

“My father was involved in the building of Tower Square,” said vice president of skin care development and licensed aesthetician Kim Brunton-Auger. “I feel really lucky to continue the Brunton tradition of involvement in Springfield.”

STCC partners with Post University

Springfield Technical Community College this fall partnered with Post University in Waterbury, Connecticut, to offer seamless transfer pathways in six programs.

Students in the following STCC associate degree programs have an opportunity to transfer to Post University and pursue a bachelor’s degree: applied psychology, business transfer, communication and digital media, criminal justice transfer, early childhood education transfer, and human services/ social work.

Post University offers classes online but also has a 58-acre main campus that includes six student residence halls, admissions building, library, fitness center and a multipurpose sports facility. The main campus classes for spring 2021 also will be online in response to risks posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This spring, STCC also is planning online classes with a mix of low-density in-person labs for health and manufacturing programs.

STCC and Post University signed the agreements in September. STCC offers dozens of pathways for transferring to a four-year college or university. Students who take advantage of the transfer pathways can see significant financial savings, said Matt Gravel, dean of Academic Initiatives at STCC.

“We’re thrilled to partner with Post University and give our students a great opportunity to save money while pursuing a bachelor’s degree. You can save thousands of dollars by starting at STCC and transferring through one of our many pathways,” Gravel said. “We encourage students who are planning on going on to a four-year college or university after STCC to speak with their academic advisors early about the transfer pathways. They will need to plan early in order to take courses or programs that parallel requirements at the college they plan to attend.”

“This new partnership has been designed with the unique needs of a community college student population in mind,” Post University Provost Elizabeth Johnson said. “We look forward to having these Springfield Technical Community College students become Post Eagles through a supportive and easy transition process that allows them to keep their focus on gaining the skills and knowledge needed for their career of choice.”

To learn more about the transfer agreements at STCC, visit or call the Admissions Office at 413-755-3333.

Diane Dunkerly, Community Bank commercial banking officer, helps to prepare take-out dinners for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield youth and their families.

Springfield Technical Community College has partnered with Post University in Waterbury, Connecticut, to offer seamless

transfer pathways in six programs. (STCC PHOTO)

Bookmark and Share