Barrett Hospital reduces workforce by 14 FTE

Vacancy savings, schedule changes, 3 layoffs

Barrett Hospital and Healthcare Chief Executive Officer Ken Westman says the organization has been forced to reduce the work force by the equivalent of 14 full-time positions.

A combination of not rehiring open positions, scheduling changes and hour reductions and layoffs has been used to meet the reduction in force, and in the end three employees were given their pink slips.

“Right now we’re experiencing lower volumes than we had hoped to see so we are really adjusting our staffing to our volumes,” said Westman, who added that the hospital has roughly 250 employees. “We’ve been talking about these numbers for some time with our managers. Coming into 2014, December was not strong and January was not as strong as we would like to see, so we realized that we needed to make adjustments.”

According to Westman, in three of the past seven months, the hospital did not make a profit.

“In adjusting our staffing numbers, we’re really looking at where we are at with our staffing numbers and where we are at with our volumes,” said Westman. “It is a very difficult thing, but it is something as a business that we have to do to maintain a strong health care organization for our community and for the people we are serving out there.”

Two indicators Westman points under productivity and efficiency are Paid FTE’s per Adjusted Occupied Bed and Salary and Benefits as a percentage of Net Revenue. In both categories, Barrett Hospital has been out of line with national averages, according to Westman. The national average in the Paid FTE’s per Adjusted Occupied Bed is 5.78, while Barrett Hospital is at 7.97. Barrett’s Salary and Benefits as a percentage of Net Revenue were at 61.34 percent, compared to the national average of 50.78 percent. 

“We need to manage these numbers,” said Westman. “It is not fun decisions when it affects peoples lives. This is not an easy thing, but we have to think of the whole organization and what we are trying to do for the community.”