Three jobs eliminated, seven won’t be filled as income falls 7.9%
PRINCETON — Perry Memorial Hospital’s final audit report for fiscal year 2019 has identified a $3.4 million loss from operations, which will result in the elimination of 10 positions, seven currently unfilled, along with other planned cost savings.
A press release issued by the hospital on Oct. 31 states the primary contributor to the loss is the change in the percent of care provided to patients with government-funded care, such as Medicare and Medicaid, versus patients with commercial insurance.
The secondary change is the shift from inpatient care to outpatient and observation hospital care, the release stated.
Annette Schnabel, Perry’s CEO and president, said Perry provides the same care to all patients, and costs remain the same.
“We do not receive the same level of reimbursement for our observation patients, in fact it is much less,” she said.
The $3.4 million loss makes up 7.9 percent of Perry’s annual net revenue.
To respond to this budget shortfall, Perry is trimming its expenses. As of last week, one clinical and two support staff positions have been eliminated, and seven currently open positions will not be filled.
Perry is also reviewing supply costs while establishing checks and balances in its current fiscal year. Employees were notified of the changes via email earlier last week.
Despite the job reductions, Schnabel said all patient care needs will continue to be met with remaining staff.
These changes will not impact the ongoing discussions Perry is currently having with OSF HealthCare regarding partnership options.
“Perry initiated the conversation with OSF due to the changes in health care delivery and the ability to provide for technology and care coordination. For Perry, that need continues to be the purpose behind the conversations,” Schnabel said.
The changes also will not impact the current construction of Perry’s Family Health Clinic building, located at 535 Park Avenue East. The 15,000-square-foot building is still on schedule to be complete in February 2020. The exterior structure is nearing completion, and work will continue in the interior as winter sets in.
“Perry’s primary focus has always been to be the local heath care provider and an employer of many great people today, tomorrow and into the future,” Schnabel said.
Perry Memorial Hospital is a city-owned, not-for-profit hospital that dates back to 1903. The 25-bed critical access facility is one of Bureau County’s largest employers with a workforce of approximately 375 people.