Bill Cyr has had his share of visits to the Island hospital. As senior operations manager for Boston MedFlight, a critical care transport service supported by six of Boston’s teaching hospitals, Mr. Cyr’s trips to the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital are normally quick and serious.
But his visit to the hospital on March 15 was different. Mr Cyr, also a critical care nurse and paramedic, was on-Island for the Martha’s Vineyard Hopsital's annual health fair. Instead of rushing a patient from the Island to an emergency room in Boston, Mr. Cyr, dressed in a blue flight suit, interacted with the Island community on a more personal level. Mr. Cyr, along with Boston MedFlight director of communications Kenneth J. Panciocco Jr., talked with guests that stopped by their booth in the lobby.
“Some people think we are the Coast Guard, Air Force, or a for-profit company. And we’re none of those things,” said Kenneth J. Panciocco, Jr., director of communications for Boston MedFlight. “It’s nice to see kids' faces too,” he added. Mr. Panciocco said members of Boston MedFlight typically meet people on “the worst day of their lives,” and to meet them on day like the health fair is worthwhile.
“This is also nice because we get to talk to patients we normally don’t see again after care,” said Mr. Cyr.
Boston MedFlight handed out pins of the three types of transport vehicles the company uses: a helicopter, an ambulance and a jet. They also gave away calendars and bracelets.
Presented by the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital and featuring many of the Island’s doctors, practitioners, educators and healthy living promoters, the fair brought out hundreds of people. The four-hour event began at 8 a.m. Hospital director of development Rachel Vanderhoop said the health fair hosted 46 exhibitors this year. Exhibitor tables were spread out around the hospital from the main lobby to the laboratory, courtyard corridor, annex and then inside the resource center, where five seminars were held.
Outside, kids and adults toured an Oak Bluffs ambulance and police cruiser.
Inside, there was something for everyone, from massage therapy donated by Integrated Health Care to complementary hot/cold packs from the hospital to free glaucoma screenings given by optometrists Dr. David Finkelstein and Dr. Ryan Shea.
Each organization came to the fair to promote healthy lifestyles. Takeaways from the fair ranged from skin care samples, pens and pamphlets to intangible goods, like future volunteer opportunities and a chance to thank a person who helped save a life.