Good Samaritan Medical Center Sees Major Influx of Patients After Brockton Hospital Fire

A fire forced the evacuation of 176 patients from Brockton Hospital on Feb. 7

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Last week's fire at Brockton Hospital has had a major impact on a nearby health facility.

At Good Samaritan Medical Center, a busy emergency room is now a lot busier.

"It's been difficult, to say the least. It's been extremely busy," said Kim Vazquez, an emergency room nurse at Good Samaritan. "It is heart-breaking for the nurses, because we know there is such a need, especially in the communities that we serve."

Last Tuesday, a transformer fire at Brockton Hospital turned into a 10-alarm response as firefighters from across the region rushed to Brockton to help fight it. Since then, Brockton Hospital has been offline, leaving Good Samaritan the only major emergency room open Brockton.

After the fire, 176 patients were transferred from Brockton Hospital, and nurses inside Good Samaritan Hospital says the demand inside was felt immediately.

A massive fire broke out Tuesday at Brockton Hospital, forcing the evacuations of patients.

"It was really hard, it was like a parade of ambulances and it has been a non-stop parade of ambulances since," Vazquez said.

Good Samaritan officials say emergency room volume has approximately doubled since the fire at Brockton Hospital, and they are working to bring in more resources.

"While Brockton Hospital remains closed, we will continue to work on creative ways to ensure that our dedicated staff has the resources they need and that everyone in the Brockton community has access to care without interruption," the hospital said in a statement. "Soon after last week's fire, Good Samaritan Medical Center immediately began working with our colleagues at Brockton Hospital, and city and state officials to help maintain vital access to care for this community."

City Councilor Jeffrey Thompson says the city needs help. Brockton Hospital is in his ward, and Thompson is calling for help from state and local officials.

Nearly 200 patients have been transported out of Brockton Hospital following a massive fire.

"We really need to treat this like the emergency it is," Thompson said. "Lives are at stake, so we need a full buy-in from our state partners, we need monies for repairs, we need coordination."

Nurses inside agree. They say they need help. The last week leaving them stressed and exhausted.

"You can only be in one place at one time, and there may be two or four or seven people who need you at that time," said Jennifer Falter, a nurse at Good Samaritan.

Thompson says the damage inside Brockton Hospital is still being evaluated and there is no timeline for when it may come back online.

"We are feeling the pressure. Before this incident, we were being asked to come in early, stay late, pick up extra shifts, and now, it is almost at a crisis," Falter said.

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