St. Claire HealthCare furloughed 300 staff who are not directly involved in the delivery of care or participating in the COVID-19 response Thursday.
While preparing for the predicted surge in COVID-19 patients, SCH has also taken action to keep its patients safe. All elective surgeries and screening diagnostic procedures, outpatient therapy services, sleep lab testing, aesthetics procedures, and more have been postponed until further notice. SCH has fully complied with CDC recommendations and mandates from Governor Andy Beshear aimed at reducing the spread of illness.
SCH President and CEO Donald H. Lloyd, II said in a press release Thursday: “We must manage the consequences of such directives in order to support our clinical operations and COVID-19 response.”
“SCH has been forced to take immediate steps to proactively manage the operational impact of COVID-19. Over the past 10 days SCH has experienced a significant decline in patient visits at clinic locations, ambulatory and ancillary locations, and within our medical education operations. Sadly, those numbers are projected to get worse before they get better and no one ones know how long this pandemic will continue.
“We realize that our actions will have a tremendous impact on our staff and our community,” said Lloyd. “It’s not a decision we wanted to make nor do we take it lightly, but we have to take immediate action to ensure that we can sustain our clinical operations during and after the COVID-19 crisis ends.”
The furlough will affect approximately 25% of the existing workforce, with some remaining staff experiencing a reduction in worked hours until this crisis subsides.
Furloughed employees will keep their positions and will be recalled as needed to respond to a surge of COVID-19 patients, or as federal and state funding becomes available or recovery of normal operations can begin. In the meantime, SCH will cover the costs of furloughed medical, dental, and vision insurance and will provide assistance applying for unemployment claims.