Baylor Scott & White announces layoffs, furloughs due to COVID-19

Published: May. 26, 2020 at 1:32 PM CDT
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Baylor Scott & White Health is planning to layoff 1,200 employees due to the impact of COVID-19, according to a video sent to employees Tuesday.

In a statement, Baylor Scott & White officials said the hospital system would also temporarily reduce the salary of senior executives, modify physician compensation models, and flex or furlough other employees to accommodate changing volumes.

The statement went on to say that the health system had worked to protect the pay of all employees through May. That was recently extended to June 7.

KBTX has reached out to officials at Baylor Scott & White facilities in the Brazos Valley to see how these layoffs and furloughs will impact services locally.

In his video, BSW CEO Jim Hinton said the system prepared for the surge in February by buying PPE, modifying facilities, and creating virtual care options. As a result of preparing for the pandemic, the decision to suspend services caused a "dramatic drop" between 50% and 90% in patient volume. Their first instinct, Hinton said, was to protect their team members.

Hinton said that employees will be notified starting this week if they are going be laid off. Their hope is to help those affected by the layoffs to find new work.

Here is the full statement from Baylor Scott & White - College Station:

Throughout the course of the pandemic, our focus has been on the safety and well-being of our patients and team members. Early on, we made the decision to protect the pay of all employees through the end of May, and we recently extended that through June 7th. We worked to reassure and safeguard our people through the uncertainty as we prepared for a potential surge of COVID-19 patients, yet experienced a drastic drop in visits, largely due to the suspension of non-urgent surgeries and procedures. Now, as early data is revealing the significant economic implications of the pandemic on Texans and the operational and financial implications on our health system, we are implementing changes to remain prepared and able to adapt in continued unpredictability. These changes include temporary salary reductions of senior executives, modified physician compensation models, flexing and furloughing of employees to accommodate changing volumes, and a reduction of our workforce of around 3%. While designed to better match our resources with evolving community needs, any decisions to part with our people are always very difficult. We are committed to supporting these team members' transitions in every way possible. Other changes were announced to employees today as part of a comprehensive plan to strengthen our organization for the future, including growing digital offerings and further investing in team members on the frontlines.