March 26, 2018

Access to Boston’s Mass General Hospital: Cooley Announces Daily Van Shuttle

March 26, 2018

NORTHAMPTON – To help Pioneer Valley residents access health care services at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Cooley Dickinson Health Care and Mass General are teaming up to offer a round-trip, non-stop daily van shuttle. The free service debuts Monday, April 9.

“We are excited to offer this new service to make it easier for patients and family members to access care when needed at Mass General,” President and Chief Executive Officer Joanne Marqusee said.

“We have heard from people in our community that the challenges and worries of getting to and parking in Boston can be a barrier to getting the care they want at Mass General.  We are thrilled that our affiliation with Mass General will make access easier for our community.”

“It’s exciting to announce this partnership with Cooley Dickinson,” said Tony James, Mass General Hospital’s senior vice president of network development and integration. “Getting patients to the right care at the right time and in the right place is the motivation behind this shuttle service. We look forward to providing enhanced access to MGH for residents of the Pioneer Valley,” added James, who is also a member of the Cooley Dickinson Health Care Board of Trustees.

The 12-passenger van, which is equipped with Wi-Fi, will depart daily from the parking lot across from 8 Atwood Drive in Northampton at 6:30 am. The van’s destination is Mass General Hospital’s Fruit Street Main Entrance. The van will leave Mass General for Northampton at 3 pm. The shuttle runs Monday through Friday; it is not available on major holidays.

The service, which is a pilot program, is open to Pioneer Valley residents. There is no cost to ride the shuttle, but reservations are required. To make a reservation, call 888-554-4CDH (4234). Please call 24 hours in advance to reserve a seat on the shuttle. Children ages 18 and under must be accompanied by an adult.

Learn more at cooley/ or call 888-554-4CDH (4234).

29 thoughts on “Access to Boston’s Mass General Hospital: Cooley Announces Daily Van Shuttle

  1. It is the best idea and the best help for patients (like me) which almost every month I have to go for follow up tests, procedure and visiting providers.
    Your measures on this matter is highly appreciated and without doubt I can say these are the best and REAL HELP for HUMANITY. Thanks, wish you all the best.
    Abdullah Olomi (patient CDH and MGH)

  2. This is a terrific idea! I, and a few friends, make several trips a year to MGH via bus and then taxi from the bus terminal. To say it is exhausting and uncomfortable for someone with medical issues is an understatement. The cost can also be burdensome for those on fixed incomes. Again, this is a great idea for a very welcome service. Thank you! My only recommendation at this time is that the shuttle van be one that has individual seating as opposed to bench seats.

    1. Hi, Thanks for your input! I reached out to you via email and shared some of the photos of the van’s interior. Please let us know if you have additional questions. Best wishes, Christina – 888-554-4234

  3. This is amazing. I frequently commute to MGH for care and at times, am too unwell to drive myself that far and then need to find someone to drive me. I am so grateful for this!

    1. Thanks for your feedback, Christine. We appreciate your input. Best wishes, Christina; 888-554-4234

    1. HI,
      The approximate arrival time at Mass General is 9:30 am. Our drivers have driven the route many times in advance of Monday’s start of the shuttle program and due to unexpected fluctuations in traffic/weather, we suggest this approximate arrival time. Please be in touch with our call center directly with more specific questions or to make a reservation. Thank you, Christina 888-554-4234.

      1. This is great! I’ve been going to MGH for years for treatment and the most stressful part was driving to Boston during rush hour. The timing for this new shuttle service couldn’t come at a better tine since I will soon have to begin making more frequent trips. Thanks.

  4. This sounds like a fabulous service. My wife and daughter and I, all have our medical care at MGH. My wife and I are in our late 70’s and the drive in and back is becoming more difficult. My question to you, Christine, is this; Do we have to be patients of Cooley-Dickinson to avail ourselves of this service?

    1. HI, Denis,
      As long as you are receiving care at Mass General, the Cooley Dickinson/Mass General shuttle is a service you can take advantage of. While you may not receive your local care at Cooley Dickinson, there are many benefits of a local care provider in collaboration with Mass General, such as our shared electronic health record. Thank you, Christina

      1. Tis is the best idea for patients and the community. I have had so much stress about going to Mass General. In a time of difficulty, this is a great relief!

  5. Normally your 3:00 pm time doesn’t work for my afternoon MGH appointments. But I need to be at MGH for chemo for 4 days in July. May I reserve the trip to MGH on Mon. 7/16 at 6:00 am and return on Thurs. 7/19 at 3:00 pm. Thanks for your anticipated reply.

    1. Hi, Patricia, Please be in touch directly with Mary Ann in the Cooley Dickinson call center [888-554-4234] to make a reservation/discuss options available. Thank you for contacting Cooley Dickinson, and best wishes! Christina

  6. How do I register if it’s Sunday for Monday morning? I tried to call all the number and can’t get a person or voicemail…

    1. Hi Tamar,

      That would probably be a question for Mass General. Their main switchboard, if you want to give them a call, is at 617-726-2000.

    2. HI, Tamar,
      Thanks so much for being back in touch with your question. We saw the question a few weeks ago and contacted Mass General on your behalf. Mass General does not offer shuttle service between the MGH main campus and MGH Waltham. Thank you for following up, and for your patience.

  7. My husband, who is being treated at Mass General and takes the shuttle monthly, and I just want to specifically praise the two drivers on the shuttle from Northampton to MGH: Leo and Yolanda. What incredible drivers you have on staff–at least I assume they’re on staff. If not, they should be. They are treasures.

    Leo, your morning driver, has shown up on time in all kinds of weather and all kinds of traffic. He’s a solid driver who negotiates the Mass Pike with professionalism and calm no matter what the conditions. Since we’re all pretty tired in the morning, most of us doze off in the van and wake up in front the Wang Building as if no time has passed. Thanks to Leo handling all the hassle, we don’t have to deal with it.

    Yolanda, the afternoon driver, also incredibly solid and calm, is a wonderment!. It’s like having the best, most supportive extension of your medical staff as our taxi driver! In the afternoon, people have been in the hospital getting examined, poked, scanned, and much more! Yolanda greets everyone with such compassion, concern, and warmth. She is both careful and caring, two qualities we don’t always see together as we attend appointments.

    I hope you can pass on this e-mail to whoever is in charge of the shuttle program and these two employees. Their professionalism made a huge difference in my husband’s challenging treatment. We’ve recommended the shuttle to friends and family who are reluctant to see doctors in Boston. Most especially, I hope whoever supervises Leo and Yolanda can spotlight them somehow in your promotional materials . . . and reward them professionally since we’re not allowed to offer tips. Thank you for employing two such excellent drivers. I hope Uber doesn’t hire them away!

    1. Thank you, Louise, for sharing your feedback. We will make sure that the people who oversee the shuttle program both at Cooley Dickinson and Mass General are aware of your input. Best wishes!

    1. Hi, Yes, a family member can accompany a patient; please be sure to indicate the number of people riding when you make your reservation. We look forward to assisting you. Thank you!

  8. I have a friend who has an appointment at the Brigham and was wondering if your van could be used to MGH and then idependently get over to the Brigham?

    1. Hello Susan,

      Cooley Dickinson only runs shuttles to MGH & back. If you need transportation between MGH and Brigham, I believe there is a network of shuttles that run between the Boston-area Partners hospitals. However, we do not have anything to do with the planning or scheduling of these shuttles, or whether their schedules align conveniently with ours.

      Tom Sturm
      Digital Media Coordinator
      Cooley Dickinson Health Care

  9. Please reinstate the very much-needed shuttle from Northampton to MGH as soon as possible. Maybe make it mandatory to be vaccinated/wear masks/ negative covid test to be safe. It is a tremendous assistance to those of us who cannot drive to Boston and a true service to the “partnership” . Thank you

    1. Thank you for writing with your feedback about reinstating the Cooley Dickinson/Mass General shuttle. We have started to evaluate with our colleagues at Mass General how we would begin to resume shuttle service given we are still seeing COVID in our community. It’s a good sign that vaccine availability has opened up so widely. As soon as we have an update related to the shuttle, we will communicate that news. In the meantime, we will share your feedback with the leadership team at Cooley Dickinson. Thank you for your input!

  10. It would be greatly appreciated if the shuttle could be restarted. There are *many* patients that could benefit from this service. I would not mind wearing a mask. I have been on many other shuttles across the area with no issues. Your consideration is so appreciated!!

    1. Thank you for your comment about restarting shuttle service to Boston for Cooley Dickinson-Mass General patients. Planning is underway, and we look forward to being able to offer this service again soon. When we have approval to relaunch the shuttle, we will update the Cooley Dickinson website.


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