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Carilion Clinic reduces pay and hours, furloughs some employees

(WDBJ)
Published: Apr. 14, 2020 at 10:17 AM EDT
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The financial fallout from the

pandemic continues to spread in western Virginia.

Tuesday,

said it is taking steps to reduce expenses, including furloughs for some employees, reduced hours for others and pay cuts for senior leadership.

"While we're faring better than some, the crisis isn't over yet," said Carilion Clinic President and CEO Nancy Agee in a video shared with employees.

She said the health system is moving to address immediate cash-flow needs and ensure a strong future.

"In addition to safeguarding the health of our patients, it is my job to safeguard the financial health of our organization," Agee said, "so we can be here to care for our patients and our communities now and into the future. And that means making hard decisions."

Among those decisions are furloughs for some employees, a reduction in hours for others and pay cuts for Agee and other senior executives.

Many hospitals were facing financial challenges before COVID-19. The pandemic magnified the problem, says Julian Walker, Vice President of Communications for the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association. Virginia hospitals, he says, could lose $600 million in a 30-day period.

"You've seen at different hospitals, it's no different than what you've seen in other sectors of the economy," Walker said. "What's different is hospitals are the ones that are open 24/7 365, whether it's during this pandemic or any other situation."

Agee said she remains optimistic about the future of the health system and its employees.

"One day soon I am confident this will be behind us. Things will return to a new normal," Agee said. "And we will be smarter, better and stronger as a result."

The health system will re-evaluate staffing on a weekly basis, and Agee said she anticipates the measures Carilion Clinic announced Tuesday will be temporary.

Copyright 2020 WDBJ7. All rights reserved.

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