MultiCare Health System have laid off 229 employees, or about 1 percent of the its 23,000 staff members, including about two dozen leaders, in an ongoing effort to reduce the health system’s expenses. 37 positions were eliminated at Multicare Yakima Memorial Hospital as a result of the reduction in staff across the entire system.

FINANCIAL CHALLENGES HAVE FORCED THE SYSTEM TO MAKE TOUGH DECISIONS

A press release says like many other health systems "MultiCare continues to face financial challenges stemming from the global pandemic, including record-high inflation, labor shortages, increased costs of contract labor, as well as a 20-year stagnation in Medicaid reimbursement rates in the state of Washington and other factors contributing to sustained cost increases in the health care industry." The healthcare provider is losing a lot of money as a result of the challenges.  The press release says "through May, MultiCare has lost $121 million. In 2022, the health system recorded a loss of $287 million.

OFFICIALS SAY THE CUTS WERE NECESSARY TO SAVE MONEY

“The decision to eliminate staff is never an easy one and it is not an effort that we undertake lightly,” said Bill Robertson, CEO of MultiCare. “These reductions are unfortunately necessary as MultiCare works to address our financial challenges. They were made after a thoughtful review of our operations and with the charge that any changes made must help ensure we can continue to care for our patients now, as well as be able to serve our communities in the future.”

STAFF CUTS ARE JUST ONE PART OF THE COST SAVING MOVE

Staff reductions are one component of the organization’s efforts to bring its operating costs back into alignment. Other initiatives include work to utilize resources more efficiently in patient care areas, streamlining some support department structures and reducing some services.

THE CUTS ARE HAPPENING ALL AROUND THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST

Most staff reductions have happened or will take place in support departments, such as marketing, IT and finance and will be spread across the Puget Sound, Inland Northwest and Yakima regions. All impacted employees have been notified or have already been contacted.

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