“Health and wellness” is a trendy, catch-all term that encompasses so many things, from cutting-edge medical care and the innovations of the life sciences industry, to fitness and body positivity, to beauty and self-care, to getting outside and connecting with nature.
All of that exists in Peabody. A city once known for its leather industry, Peabody now sits at the crossroads of several major highways, making it the perfect location for connecting people on the North Shore to health and wellness resources that rival those in the biggest cities.
In fact, two of the region’s most esteemed medical institutions have locations in Peabody: Boston Children’s Hospital and Lahey Hospital & Medical Center, which is part of Beth Israel Lahey Health and is a teaching hospital for Tufts University School of Medicine.
“We’re very fortunate to have Lahey Peabody; we have Boston Children’s North Shore at Centennial Park,” says Peabody Mayor Edward Bettencourt. “I think Peabody is an attractive location for those operations because we have great access in terms of highways.”
“There are complex specialty services available in Peabody that, without that location, patients would have to go to Boston,” says Timothy Liesching, MD, Lahey Hospital & Medical Center chief medical officer and interim president.
He points to services like complicated orthopedic or ophthalmology procedures, complex cancer care, and a host of other specialties including endocrinology, cardiology, and pulmonology. He also says Lahey is expanding its orthopedics and ophthalmology programs in Peabody.
“It’s like bringing the care of the academic medical centers to the community,” he says.
In addition to a wide range of specialty and surgical care, the Peabody Lahey location also offers primary care, an emergency room, and even a small inpatient unit. “I think all those services in Peabody complement each other really well,” Dr. Liesching says. “It really allows us to provide full-service medical care in the community.” Full-service medical care isn’t the only wellness offering in Peabody. Bettencourt points to places ranging from Life Time, the new gym and wellness center at the Northshore Mall, to Analogic, which counts among its products imaging systems for the medical industry.
He’s also proud of the Peabody Independence Greenway, a five-plus-mile walking and bike trail that runs through the city, that’s going to be getting a massive upgrade in the coming years, thanks to planned connections with Middleton, Lynnfield, and Salem. There are also plans to extend the trail throughout Peabody itself, including a portion that extends over Route 1 and has connections to downtown.
“I want to have a fully connecting bike path/walking trail through the city of Peabody. I think it’ll be terrific,” he says. “That’s something, personally, I’m very excited about. I think it’s going to be wonderful for our community.”
Another great option for outdoor fitness and wellness in Peabody is Brooksby Farm, a city-owned working farm that also offers hiking, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing, in addition to traditional farm activities.
Whether it’s a day spa or med spa, state-of-the-art healthcare facilities, or free outdoor fitness spots, the city of Peabody has become a hub of health and wellness on the North Shore.
“A focus of Peabody is to try to provide access for people and opportunities for recreational enjoyment and health,” Bettencourt says.