OSF HealthCare requiring some unpaid time off, to reduce salaries during COVID-19 crisis

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — OSF HealthCare is seeing a drastic decrease in inpatient intake since the shutdown of non-essential services that has been in effect since March 21.

OSF announced Tuesday that they are having financial concerns. It is adjusting revenue loss caused by the pandemic so it is reducing the salaries of top executives by at least 5%, with some management taking a 10% reduction.

The company also said most non-patient-facing Mission Partners will have to take mandatory paid time off or unpaid leaves of absence. During this time employees will be able to apply for unemployment benefits. OSF said patients needing non-life threatening care will still be able to receive care digitally.

Moving forward, OSF said they will offer new ways of caring for individuals in their home, offering digital solutions.

A statement from OSF reads,

It may seem unusual that during an international pandemic, where hospitals and health care systems are seeing drastic increases in patients with life-threatening respiratory conditions from COVID-19, concerns about finances would begin to emerge. Inpatient services, surgeries, clinics, and OSF Urgo volumes have decreased significantly over the last three weeks as non-essential services have been shut down and our communities are staying home to reduce the spread of the virus. Our revenue has dropped substantially over that same time period.

For the past several weeks, OSF has continued to staff its facilities according to the volume of patients being cared for. As volumes have continued to decline, OSF has been reviewing all options, including moving Mission Partners on a volunteer basis to other areas of need during the crisis. Retraining and moving Mission Partners has already been occurring across the Ministry, particularly in southwest Chicago at the health system’s newest hospital, OSF Little Company of Mary Medical Center, where the number of positive cases remains high.

Moving forward for the short term, most non-patient-facing Mission Partners will be subject to mandatory paid time off or, in some cases, unpaid leaves of absence, during which they can apply for the enhanced unemployment benefits enacted by the government. Mission Partners will retain seniority and years of service and will continue to have benefits available during this time, including health insurance.

OSF is preparing to move into the next phase of its digital response to COVID-19, offering new ways of caring for individuals in their homes, and within its facilities, with digital solutions. OSF is in the process of filling these pandemic health worker roles with Mission Partners eligible to make the transition. This program is open to non-clinical staff as well as licensed clinicians and providers.

Shelli Dankoff, OSF Health Care Media Relations Supervisor

The shut down was initially set to be lifted April 7, but Gov. J.B. Pritzker extended his executive order to April 30.

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