Loyola University Health System has activated a workforce-reduction plan as part of a wide-ranging effort to finish FY2010 in the black and strengthen its long-term economic future. Loyola University Medical Center is removing 372 full-time jobs from its payroll (including 69 vacant positions) and 71 full-time jobs are being removed from Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine (includes seven vacant positions) for a total of 443 positions. The laid-off employees represent about 8 percent of the LUHS staff. The layoffs will reduce the health system's budgeted expenses by $21 million and set it on a more conservative financial course. Without the workforce reduction, Loyola faced the prospect of a year-end loss that would exceed $50 million. The reduction in force is just one of the cost-cutting measures that LUHS has in place to regain its financial strength, including reducing our supply costs, streamlining hospital stays and discharges, activating a more precise coding process to reduce rejected insurance claims. Of the 443 positions, 372 are from Loyola University Medical Center (includes 69 vacant positions) and 71 are from the Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine (includes 7 vacant positions). A total of 35 management-level jobs will be eliminated, with 22 from the medical center and 10 employees from the medical school. Three of the eliminated management positions were vacant. A total of 31 nurses are affected by the work reduction. Two of the eliminated nursing positions are research nurses. The remaining 29 nurses work in clinical areas and will be transferred into the central registry for 30 days while Loyola tries to place them in other nursing positions within the system.
Affected employees are being notified this week in individual meetings with their supervisors and representatives from Human Resources. In accordance with Loyola policy, these employees are being offered a severance package that includes health and dental coverage at the employee rate for six months followed by an additional 18 months of COBRA coverage; severance pay based on years of service and outplacement and counseling services. All are eligible to be rehired when openings occur in the future. Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, part of the Loyola University Health System, is not affected by the reduction in force. LUHS is among the many healthcare systems that have needed to reduce staffing during this severe recession. These difficult and painful steps will ensure that Loyola will continue to care for the communities we serve, now and in the years ahead.