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Hartselle Enquirer

Hospital announces layoffs

Eighteen Hartselle Medical Center employees are losing their jobs in an effort to further consolidate the hospital’s functions with fellow Capella-owned Parkway Medical Center. The layoffs, announced Tuesday, come on the heels of the dissolution of the CEO and CFO positions two weeks ago in an effort to move towards what owners call a “system approach to management.”

“For months we’ve looked at the best, most logical ways to work more collaboratively,” said Tim McGill, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Parkway and Hartselle Medical Centers.  “After evaluating all of the services we provide at both hospitals, we concluded that there were some support functions that could be coordinated more efficiently.  These changes will not impact any of the healthcare services we provide to the community.”

The local job losses will be in administration, business office, transcription, dietary and materials management departments.

“This is a tough but necessary decision that will position both hospitals to ride out a tough economy, while preparing for the era of health care reform that will force all hospitals to work more efficiently to succeed,” McGill said said.

McGill said Tennessee-based Capella remains committed to the Hartselle facility.

“We continue to look at ways to grow services and add new ones. That will ultimately mean new jobs created and expanded healthcare for Morgan County.  Already this month, we began a new Hospitalist Program at Hartselle.  And we’ve recruited another new physician – Dr. Bhavna Gowda, a family practitioner – who has just opened her practice here.”

Combined, Parkway and HMC have 550 employees. Employees were notified of the changes Tuesday, with the transitions coming in 30-45 days.

Hospital officials said each dismissed employee was offered severance pay; transfer to another Capella-owned facility if a position if available; career, financial and personal counseling if desired.

McGill said “barring any extraordinary events,” he doesn’t foresee any additional job loss.

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