Thursday, August 17, 2006

Cut at any Cost.. 9/2

I really don't know what's happened at corporate, but from what has been coming up in direct emails, it doesn't bode well for the whole. Seems budgetary cuts are the way of life, and what is the simplest solution?....Cut personnel.

The events described in this blog have never seemed remotely close to how the Merrimack Valley Hospital was being run. The MVH folks were mostly proud of how Essent had turned the old Hale Hospital into a respected medical institution in the Valley. The only people that were fired or laid off were people that largely deserved it.

It now seems that Essent has, with the hiring of a new CEO and COO, joined the rest of the Essent hospitals by putting the value of employees at the very bottom of their priorities list.

In the past, the administration would not even consider lay-offs as a means to remedy a poor earning quarter. The new COO has been heard boasting in the hallways of his prowess at his former jobs at slashing employment and saving the day. If the rumors of 50 coming layoffs are true, it would appear the new CEO has been slapped around by the Nashville crowd sufficiently to consider layoffs the quickest way to their dreams of how much this facility should be earning.

Hopefully more to come as events unfold but sign me: "a soon to be ex-employee"
Personnel cuts only work in the short term--as many companies have found. Now, what begs the question: What are they getting ready for? A buy? A sale? Or did they over commit with their promises to the communities in their building programs? To make a new hospital, are they robbing Peter to pay Paul?

As I said, personnel cuts are a fast fix for the lazy. Finding root causes of expenditures is harder, but longer lasting. Thinking out-of-the-box might be cliche, but it would seem that their CEO/COO team had found a nice corner of theirs to hibernate in.


fac_p said...

...and maybe that's the reason for all the agency folks that they have the flexibility to alter personnel levels virtually at will.

The other reason, is that this is a shell game. FTEs are placed on one side of the ledger, while agency staff is in a different category. What looks good on paper is often the opposite of reality.

They may or may not need to go for more capital for the Muskogee bid, but trimming the books never hurts when you're about to ask for cash....

fac_p said...

I really apologize for the directional screw-up. Too many valleys up there.

Paris Texas is far flatter, and certainly with far less trees.

And fewer micro breweries...dry city, you know.

Anonymous said...

Good one fac_p, good one!

Anonymous said...

You get 'em fac_p!

Anonymous said...

Wasn't this the hospital that wasn't going to use traveling nurses?

Looks like they're starting to out-number the regular ones! Guess their "...affiliation with schools and creating a good reputation has helped recruit nurses..." isn't what it was. So much for their director of clinical quality.

Anonymous said...

I seem to remember that quite a few employees were part of that "The only people that were fired or laid off were people that largely deserved it...", and that it took 17 months for the union to get a contract with the hospital.

At one point in time, the hospital was paying a $10,000 bonus to RNs, and they were still so low in staffing that the max patient load was 30.

50 employees cut would be almost 15-20% of the staff, wouldn't it? Where does that put the patient census?

Anonymous said...

It's kind of a shame that the hospital is getting known as the "hospital that is being sued by the gays", rather than by what has been accomplished. Between that and the possible cuts, it doesn't present a true picture.

Anonymous said...

There he goes again! That's why he's fac_p.

fac_p said...

Nice that someone keeps me up to date. For the actual layoffs, check this out!