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Company Notebook

Bell & Hudson Acquires Walsh/CDI Agency
BELCHERTOWN — Bell & Hudson Insurance Agency recently announced its acquisition of the Walsh/CDI Insurance Agency Inc. at 15 Central St. in West Brookfield. The West Brookfield office will continue to operate as Walsh Insurance Agency until Oct. 1, when it will take on the Bell & Hudson name. The office will continue at the same location and with the same staff, including Kathy Savary, long-time office manager for Walsh/CDI Insurance Agency. “We are pleased with this merger, as it enables us to continue offering the same level of local service our customers are familiar with, and also allows us to offer more insurance carriers,” said former owner Patricia Walsh. “Bell & Hudson is a respected independent insurance agency, and we are proud and pleased to be part of the team.” Led by President James Phaneuf and Vice President Matthew Phaneuf, Bell & Hudson now has 16 employees, including 12 licensed agents. The agency is one of only 28 independent insurance agencies in Massachusetts holding the coveted Five Star Award of Distinction presented by the Mass. Assoc. of Insurance Agents. In 2007 Bell & Hudson was named Business of the Year by the Quaboag Hills Chamber of Commerce, and in 2011 the Insurance Journal named Bell & Hudson the Best Independent Insurance Agency in the East to Work For. Bell & Hudson Insurance Agency offers property, casualty, life, group health, and accident insurance for businesses and families.

Holyoke Medical Center Ranks No. 1 in State for Stroke Care
HOLYOKE — The Stroke Collaborative Reaching for Excellence (SCORE), a voluntary, statewide quality-improvement collaborative administered by the Mass. Department of Public Health (DPH) that supports primary-stroke-service hospitals, recently ranked Holyoke Medical Center first out of 58 hospitals in Massachusetts, including large teaching facilities, for stroke care. Defect-free care is achieved when a patient receives the appropriate care based on clinical guidelines. “Holyoke Medical Center is proud that our hard work and passion for providing great care was recognized by this prestigious award from the DPH’s SCORE program,” said HMC Stroke Program Clinical Manager Angela Smith. “We strive to provide exceptional care to all of our patients. This award represents that every stroke patient that comes through our doors receives the highest quality of care.” The rating evaluated adherence to 10 stroke consensus measures and required that each stroke patient receive all 10 measures. Holyoke Medical Center had the highest score in the state. This was one of several awards the medical center received at the annual award ceremony of the American Heart/Stroke Assoc. and SCORE. The medical center also received awards for being the highest performer on the National Institute of Health Stroke Scale and the American Stroke Assoc. ‘Get With The Guidelines’ Gold, Gold Plus, and Target Stroke Honor Roll awards for consistently exceeding quality-care benchmarks for stroke and administering the clot-busting drug t-PA within 60 minutes of hospital arrival.

Elms College Social Work Program Reaccredited
CHICOPEE — The Social Work program at Elms College recently received Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) reaffirmation of accreditation through 2020. The accreditation is effective for all bachelor’s degree programs, including the traditional undergraduate degree, weekend college degree, and Social Work degree-completion program available through a partnership between Elms College and Springfield Technical Community College. Under the direction of Program Director Dr. Mary Brainerd, the Social Work department began a self-study in July 2011 that included three volumes addressing the 10 competencies as required by the CWSE’s Commission on Accreditation (COA). In February 2012, a COA representative made a site visit to the college and met with faculty, staff, students, alumni, and the advisory board. In June 2012, the COA voted to reaffirm Elms College’s accreditation for eight years. “The accreditation is a lengthy, involved process, but it is very important for our program,” Brainerd said. “Without it, our students would not be able to sit for their Social Work licensing exam after graduation and would not be able to enroll in master of Social Work programs in advanced standing, which allows them to complete a graduate degree in one year.” Elms College began offering Social Work as a concentration in the Sociology Department in 1960. The program was first accredited by CWSE in 1982. It was the first accredited undergraduate social-work program in Western Mass. Today, the program offers a four-year undergraduate curriculum that educates students to become competent and effective entry-level generalist social-work practitioners. There are currently around 90 Social Work majors, including students who complete a bachelor’s degree on the STCC campus. The Social Work program has successfully gone through the reaccreditation process five times since 1982.

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