Piedmont Healthcare Statement Regarding Cost Reductions

Piedmont Healthcare Statement Regarding Cost Reductions
Friday, June 10, 2011

ATLANTA, Ga. (June 10, 2011) - Piedmont Healthcare recently completed a comprehensive cost review as part of its system-wide Strategic Performance Improvement initiative. All categories of costs - supplies, staffing, process improvement opportunities, and other miscellaneous expenses - have been carefully examined and prioritized to uphold our commitment to safe, quality patient care.

This initiative is not unlike those occurring at other metro Atlanta healthcare systems as the healthcare industry faces Medicare cuts, new state taxes, a struggling economy, an increasing number of patients with lower-paying healthcare coverage including Medicare, Medicaid and self pay (which includes charity care and bad debt), and the unknown impact of healthcare reform.

Cost savings totaling approximately $68 million have been identified across Piedmont Healthcare. Regretfully, they include a workforce reduction that will eliminate 464 positions across the system, 171 of which were vacant or revised due to scheduling changes. This represents approximately five percent of the total workforce across Piedmont Healthcare. All staffing changes were evaluated for potential impact on patient care and customer service. At this time, it is unknown how many people will actually leave the organization, until all impacted employees are notified and are able to explore critical vacancies in the system.

"Changes like these are extremely difficult and not without emotion since they impact friends and co-workers," said R. Timothy Stack, Piedmont Healthcare President and CEO. "In all circumstances, our decisions are based on our responsibility to provide safe, quality care at a competitive price and to be good stewards of our resources as a community-based, not-for-profit healthcare provider."

Piedmont's overarching goal is to reset our cost structure to align with our changing revenue stream. Like every business seeking long-term viability, stability and growth, we must constantly assess our financial performance and capacity. Piedmont began this initiative from a position of strength and looks to sustain high quality care in a caring environment for our communities and generations to come.

All seven Piedmont Healthcare entities - Piedmont Hospital, Piedmont Fayette Hospital, Piedmont Newnan Hospital, Piedmont Mountainside Hospital, Piedmont Heart Institute, Piedmont Physicians Group, and Piedmont Healthcare corporate division - have actively participated in the Strategic Performance Improvement initiative.