More than 50,000 workers, nine hospitals, and 100 clinics or related facilities make healthcare the largest private industry in Western Massachusetts and a leading economic driver for the region.

Area hospitals are research-driven centers for cutting-edge medical technology, advanced education, and renowned care. Baystate Health, the parent organization of Baystate Medical Center, is the region's four-campus, 800-bed teaching and research giant, as well as the Western Campus of Tufts University School of Medicine. This high-achieving organization is the state's third largest employer. The Pioneer Valley Life Sciences Institute is Baystate's main biotechnology research facility, founded and operated through a partnership with the University of Massachusetts. Baystate Health's $259 million "hospital of the future" expansion is expected to add 48 beds and 295,800 square feet of unfinished space that could one day have 158 hospital beds.

Baystate consistently garners top industry rankings, and is also listed as a top endocrinology hospital by U.S. News & World Report for the second consecutive year. Baystate's network of health care centers are a regional hub for specialty medical care and research. On the health management side of this industry, Baystate Health holds the majority in Health New England, Inc., a Springfield-based Health Maintenance Organization that U.S. News & World Reports recently ranked as the ninth best health plan nationwide.

Mercy Medical Center, part of the Sisters of Providence Health System, is the region's second largest hospital. The hub of this organization, Mercy Hospital, is located in the City of Springfield. Comprehensive services are provided through its staff of nearly 3,000, on a large campus encompassing emergency treatment, short and long-term care, and hundreds of physician offices, as well as Mercy's specialty centers for hearing, oncology, maternity and more. The Shriner's Hospital for children, a world-renowned 40-bed pediatric orthopedic hospital, Cooley Dickenson, Holyoke, Noble and Wing Memorial hospitals are other hospitals in the region.

These facilities pride themselves on employing the latest technology to deliver an advanced level of medical care. Technological innovations such as the robotic da Vinci Surgical System and the Siemens Company's state-of-the-art intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) aid Western Massachusetts health care providers in obtaining the highest standards of quality of life and patient care. Local colleges and universities support this vibrant industry by offering a spectrum of career training and degree programs to an ever-growing regional health care workforce.


Massachusetts Association of Health Plans is a not-for-profit organization committed to promoting the development and value of health plans in Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Biotechnology Council (MBC) is a not-for-profit organization that provides services and support for the Massachusetts biotechnology industry. In total, the MBC is an assocation of more than 600 biotechnology companies, universities, and others dedicated to advancing research.

Massachusetts Biomedical Initiatives (MBI) is an independent, tax-exempt corporation created to support the growth and expansion of biotechnology and medical device companies throughout the region, enhancing the status of Massachusetts as a world leader in the medical industry.

Massachusetts Hospital Association (MHA) is a voluntary, not for profit organization comprised of hospitals, health care systems, related organizations, and other members with a common interest in promoting the health of the people of the Commonwealth. MHA represents and advocates for the collective interests of its member hospitals and health systems.

Massachusetts Medical Device Industry Council seeks to create a positive environment and united voice for the Massachusetts Medical Device Industry while implementing collaborative initiatives to make Massachusetts the medical device research, development, and manufacturing capital of the world.

Colleges and Universities

American International College contains the School of Health Sciences which prepares students for careers in nursing, occupational therapy, and physical therapy. Students gain professional practice through hours at clinics and interaction with real patients. AIC also provides a pre-medicine program in which students leave with the required credits to attend graduate medical school.

Elms College provides both undergraduate and graduate nursing programs in which clinical experience and a simulation lab provide real-world understanding. Elms also contains a program through which practicing registered nurses can build upon their skills to earn a bachelor of science degree.

Holyoke Community College provides Associate Degrees in nursing, and Associate in Science degrees in Radiologic Technology, and Health, Fitness & Nutrition.

Greenfield Community College offers a state-approved Associate Degree Registered Nursing program. Graduates of this program earn an Associate in Science Degree and are eligible to take the licensing exam to become registered nurses. GCC also provides programs in practical nursing, physical therapy assistance, and radiologic technology.

Springfield College has established the School of Health Sciences and Rehabilitation Studies for educating their students to become well-equipped and qualified health care personnel. Studies include communication disorders, Emergency Medical Services Management, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Physician Assisting as well as Rehabilitation and Disability Studies.

Springfield Technical Community College provides Associate Degree programs including nursing, medical assistance, pre-health, sonography, and nuclear medicine technology. STCC also offers Certificate Programs for clinical laboratory assistants, dental assistants, medical assistants, and health aides.

University of Massachusetts at Amherst contains both the School of Nursing and the School of Public Health Sciences, which offer majors such as nutrition, public health, and kinesiology. UMASS also offers masters and doctoral programs in nutrition and nursing.


Baystate Health System is a regional resource for specialty and primary medical care. Baystate Children's Hospital is housed within its flagship 653-bed hospital and provides the region's only Pediatric Intensive Care and Neonatal Intensive Care Units.

Cigna is a global health insurance provider that offers dental, medical, vision, accident, life, disablilty, and pharmaceutical coverage.

Cooley Dickinson Hospital is part of the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Alliance and offers inpatient and outpatient services at its main campus in Northampton as well as a variety of outpatient services at locations throughout western Hampshire and southern Franklin counties.

Franklin Medical Center provides inpatient and outpatient services to Franklin and Hampshire counties and Southern Vermont. This 93-bed institution is part of the Baystate Health System.

Harvard Pilgram is an independent, not-for-profit, full service health benefits company that offers a wide variety of health insurance options for companies, families and individuals.

Health New England is a managed care organization serving western Massachusetts since 1985. Over 100,000 members and 5,000 employers select HNE as their choice for health care coverage, administrative services and programs. HNE's service area covers Franklin, Berkshire, Hampden, Hampshire and parts of Worcester counties in Massachusetts.

Holyoke Hospital is affiliated with UMass Memorial Health Care in Worcester. The hospital offers Emergency and Critical Care as well as Childbirth, Imaging, Laboratory, Oncology, Outpatient, Surgery and Rehabilitation Services.

Mary Lane Hospital is a community hospital, offering a wide spectrum of services from women's health, maternity, and pediatrics, to surgical and intensive care, including 24-hour emergency services. This institution is part of the Baystate Health System.

Mercy Hospital located in Springfield, MA, is a Sisters of Providence Health System facility providing comprehensive services through specialty centers. This 182-bed hospital is the second largest in the region.

Noble Hospital is affiliated with UMass Memorial Healthcare and is a member of Noble Health Systems. This full-service health care facility provides services via its 97 licensed beds.

Shriners Hospital for Children is a 40-bed pediatric orthopedic-licensed hospital in Springfield, MA that provides treatment for diseases of the bones, muscles, and joints to children from birth to age 18. All care at Shriners is provided at no charge to patients, families, insurance companies, or governmental agencies.

Baystate Wing Hospital provides a broad range of emergency, medical, surgical and psychiatric services to residents of Palmer, Monson, Wilbraham, Ludlow, Belchertown and nearby towns. Five Wing Medical Centers and outpatient facilities are located in surrounding towns. This hospital is part of the Baystate Health System.

Healthcare News

Bringing More Nurses into the Field — and Keeping Them There — Remains Critical

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Easing the Strain Teresa Kuta Reske loves nursing. She said that on more than one occasion when speaking with BusinessWest recently for this special HCN section celebrating nurses, and especially recent nursing graduates beginning to enter the workforce. As interim dean of the Elms College School of Nursing and director of the college’s Doctor of…

Behavioral Health Network Hosts More Than 30 Local Contractors, Tradespeople at Vendor Fair

May 19, 2023

Behavioral Health Network, Inc. (BHN) recently hosted a Facilities Vendor Fair and Networking Event at the organization’s Liberty Street Campus, with more than 30 local contractors and tradespeople in attendance. Photos from BHN’s Vendor Fair can be found here:] This is the first event of its kind that BHN has hosted, with the goal…

WSU & HCC agree to nursing degree partnership

May 15, 2023

Westfield State University (WSU) and Holyoke Community College (HCC) are planning a partnership that will expand educational opportunities for nursing students. On Monday, May 15, representatives from both schools will have a signing ceremony to commemorate the new program, the first of its kind in the state. Students will be able to earn both an…