NBH is the second-largest employer in northern Berkshire County, Massachusetts, with an employee base of approximately 550 employees in four locations. NARH employs approximately 475 people, making it the largest employer in the City of North Adams. The health system contributes many millions of dollars to the local economy every year.
NBH was founded in 1984 as the parent corporation of an expanding local health care system. The original name was Northern Berkshire Health Systems (NBHS), which was changed to Northern Berkshire Healthcare in January 2005 by a vote of the Board of Corporators. The individual entities - NARH and the VNA - were drawn together as one family of healthcare providers over a period of years.
As the local health system moved beyond providing solely hospital-based services, NBHS created Northern Berkshire Comprehensive Care (commonly called CompCare), a visiting nurse agency. CompCare later was absorbed into the VNA & Hospice of Northern Berkshire when the VNA joined NBHS in 1997. REACH Community Health Foundation was established in 1998 and was re-named REACH for Community Health in 2010.