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King's Daughters Medical Center reduces workforce in face of declining patient volume, reimbursement issues 

Today, King's Daughters Medical Center made a difficult but necessary decision to reduce our workforce in response to declining patient volumes, shrinking payments from both Medicare (the federal government) and Medicaid (state governments), as well as other economic factors. The reduction affected many areas of the Medical Center but, without exception, patient care areas remain staffed appropriately. 

This reduction was taken as a last resort in order to balance our workforce with the new economic realities of healthcare in our region. Each affected Team Member left the organization with access to available benefits, including job placement services and assistance with the unemployment claim process.

Several factors weighed heavily in this decision, but two critical points are:

  1. The federal government’s approach to healthcare reform has generated multiple economic hardships. As a result, insurers are controlling their costs nationally by reducing payments to healthcare providers while increasing out-of-pocket expenses paid by the patient. In Kentucky, coverage for our Medicaid patient population has undergone significant changes in the last six months. Kentucky outsourced the management of the Medicaid program to private companies, complicating access to care and reducing payments to providers. We expect these challenges created by federal and state healthcare reform to continue well into the future.
  2. Many people are delaying healthcare treatment in the face of uncertain economic times. With higher out-of-pocket expenses, higher gas prices and the increasing cost of other necessities, consumers are forced to self-ration healthcare. KDMC understands the importance of preventive care and we encourage every individual to pursue appropriate medical treatment and follow established screening guidelines. Delaying medical care can have adverse effects on a patient's health.

Despite these challenges, the Medical Center will continue to serve its communities with convenient access to high quality care. To that end, we have several projects underway throughout the region—Portsmouth and Jackson, Ohio; and multiple sites in eastern Kentucky—and they will continue as planned. Growing our services is a key part of KDMC continuing to be the leading provider of quality healthcare in our region.

We are truly saddened that circumstances have forced us to take this action. As we move forward, we remain focused on providing patients with excellent quality and value, which are the ultimate measures of our success. All KDMC Team Members continue to focus on the most important thing: the needs of our patients. Continuing to give outstanding care and to also anticipate our patients’ needs - from offering a warm blanket to scheduling their follow-up tests - will make their experience with KDMC the best it can be.

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