Ochsner Health has released that 770 employees throughout Mississippi and Louisiana will be laid off due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a letter sent to employees, Ochsner CEO Pete November attributed the move to “increased labor costs, a shortage of patient care clinicians, high inflation, and the end of pandemic relief funding from the government.”
November stated that prior to the layoffs, the health system reduced discretionary spending, decreased reliance on agency workers, renegotiated spending on supply and service contracts, and held off on hiring for management positions.
“Despite progress and our significant efforts to reduce expenses, we need to do more to ensure we can continue to deliver on our mission and meet the needs of the patients and communities we serve,” November said. “It is the hardest change we have ever had to make at Ochsner, but one we must to ensure we continue to be a strong organization with the resources to fulfill our purpose and lead the way for clinical excellence and innovation.”
Positions impacted by the layoffs, which account for two percent of the system’s workforce, include management and primarily non-direct patient care roles.
According to Ochsner, no physicians will be impacted by this reduction, and any impacted employees with active clinical credentials will be offered direct patient care roles.
November gave the following outline of what impacted staff can expect:
- Team members impacted by this reduction will receive a calendar appointment for a meeting today about next steps and how we are supporting them through this transition.
- Each impacted full and part-time employee will continue to receive full pay and benefits for up to 65 days depending on their work schedule, in addition to severance packages for full-time and part-time employees.
- We will also offer career support, wellness resources, and details on how to apply for other job opportunities within Ochsner.
- The HR Solutions Center is standing by to answer questions and provide support to impacted staff throughout the process.
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