Gloucester is now home to a state-of-the-art hospital pharmacy, thanks to the passionate, deep-rooted commitment of the Cape Ann community. Located at Addison Gilbert Hospital (AGH), the pharmacy is dedicated in honor of long-time AGH vice president and Gloucester native, Cynthia (Cindy) Cafasso Donaldson, RPh, in recognition of her outstanding leadership and many contributions to the hospital, the system, and especially, to the community.
Donaldson retired after 33 years of service to the hospital where she was born and where she and her mother both worked as pharmacists. She is fondly celebrated by the community as a dear friend, and as a catalyst for the growth and many advancements of the hospital, which will continue under the leadership of her successor, Stacey Bunk. Cindy will remain involved with our hospitals as a member of the Philanthropy Committee.
Opened on January 18, 2021, the new pharmacy elevates safety for the patients, pharmacy staff, and nurses who administer medications throughout the hospital, and marks AGH as one of the first in the Beth Israel Lahey Health system to house a pharmacy of this kind.
“When we recognized the need to upgrade pharmacies throughout the system, Cindy effectively made the case for AGH to be first in line,” said Phil Cormier, president of Beverly and Addison Gilbert hospitals, at a virtual celebration of its opening – and of Donaldson’s retirement. There, community members and partners, elected officials, hospital benefactors, board members, and colleagues gathered together to offer heartfelt recognition and gratitude for all that she has worked to accomplish, from the expansion of cardiology care and diagnostic testing at AGH, to the creation of the Senior Adult Unit, Gorton’s Specialty and Crandall Cancer Care Center, Gloucester Urgent Care, and the new pharmacy.
“The pharmacy has the latest state-of-the-art engineering and design controls for sterility, temperature, humidity and pressure that help meet state and federal safety regulations. Most importantly, we know that it keeps our patients safe,” said Cormier, emphasizing the system’s continued commitment to providing the highest quality care, close to home.
The pharmacy was partially funded by a grant from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the rest by Beverly and Addison Gilbert Hospitals, and is a testament to the investment of the community in their local hospital, as well as the essential support of the Beth Israel Lahey Health system. As Nancy Palmer, chair of the Board of Trustees explained, “A strong community hospital is essential to a strong, healthy community. Addison Gilbert Hospital continues to be a vital part of life on Cape Ann, and we have grown only stronger as part of a larger healthcare system.”
The busy pharmacy serves 3,000 inpatients and 14,000 emergency room patients every year, and providers administer 250,000 medical doses to patients annually.
“Cindy Donaldson took the lead on making this state-of-the-art pharmacy a reality,” Cormier said. “It is just one of many large projects she has championed for our patients and people in the community who otherwise would not have a voice. That is all in addition to her quiet, steadfast management of our staff and hospital. We are greatly humbled by her dedication, so it is with great pride we dedicated the pharmacy to Cindy Cafasso Donaldson.”
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