Southcoast Health President and CEO Dr. Ray Kruger, presented Paul Coogan, Mayor of Fall River, with the 2022 Southcoast Health Hero for Health Award recognizing his leadership and collaboration throughout the pandemic.
The Southcoast Health Hero for Health Award is presented annually to an outstanding leader or group of leaders, who exemplifies the mission of Southcoast Health by fighting for and promoting health and wellness in our region, state, and country.
Mayor Coogan took office in January 2020 when three months into his first term, the COVID-19 pandemic changed the world. Mayor Coogan and public officials from the city of Fall River consistently coordinated with health experts and public safety personnel to build a regional strategy to overcome the challenges and uncertainty of this deadly virus.
“With the end of the Public Health Emergency on May 11, we can now step back and reflect upon all that has happened over the past three years. Today, I am honored to present this award to somebody who embodies what it means to work together, as a collective team, to achieve great things. That leader is our very own Mayor of Fall River-Paul Coogan,” Kruger said at the award presentation.
“Mayor Coogan partnered with Southcoast Health to stand up one of the first COVID-19 testing and vaccination sites on the South Coast at the Liberal Club and donated PPE when it was nearly impossible to source. He has worked tirelessly with Southcoast Health and other community partners to address behavioral health, substance abuse, and homelessness in our community.”
Due to the unwavering teamwork between Southcoast Health, city officials, and local Emergency Medical Services, many lives were saved throughout the pandemic.
“Working with Southcoast Health, one of Fall River’s largest employers, our public health officials, and our first responders was vital throughout the pandemic, to protecting the health of our city. I am grateful for our partnership and for their continued support and I am proud to accept the Hero for Health Award on behalf of all the residents of Fall River,” said Mayor Paul Coogan.
Last year the Southcoast Health Hero for Health award was given collectively to the 36 local municipal departments providing emergency medical services (EMS) across southeastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Southcoast Health thanks all local EMS personnel for their collaboration and partnership to provide exceptional care across the region.
Thank you to all involved for their ongoing adaptation, service, and cooperation in the region’s pandemic response.