Oroville Hospital Lays Off 20 to 30 Workers
Oroville Hospital last week fired between 20 and 30 employees as part of an effort to improve hospital efficiency, the Chico Enterprise Record reports. Hospital administrators said that the decision to eliminate some staff positions is based on an efficiency study that found the hospital was budgeting more hours than were necessary for some job duties. Increased workers' compensation costs also contributed to the decision, hospital CEO Bob Wentz said. The staff reductions were made according to stated hospital policies; per diem employee positions were eliminated first, followed by part-time employees and then full-time employees. Employees' seniority also was taken into account, according to Wentz. Positions were eliminated from the business office, admitting and housekeeping.
Hospital administrators said that employees' vote last month to join the United Steelworkers of America Health Care Workers' Council did not influence their decision to eliminate the positions. Wentz said that the vote to unionize "had no bearing at all. This is just an attempt to be more efficient." Jeff Sabin, lead organizer for the Health Care Workers' Council, said that the hospital was within its rights to eliminate the positions (Weston, Chico Enterprise Record, 9/5).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.