Beaufort County Medical Center Cuts 16 Positions, Explores Future Options

Beaufort County Medical Center is cutting 16 positions as it works to deal with a decrease in the number of patients and profits.

The Beaufort Regional Health System employs about 750 people.

"The year-long downturn in the economy has created financial challenges for Beaufort Regional Health System," stated a hospital spokesperson.

As WITN reported Wednesday, the health system is also exploring options for its future.

The health system's board has hired a consulting firm to help plan the future, which could include an affiliation with another hospital system or leasing the facilities to another hospital system which would take over responsibilities.

Information on the cuts and future plans from Beaufort Regional Health System is below.

"Beaufort County Medical Center, in response to declines in patient volumes and profitability, has announced plans to cope with the anticipated impact of the economic downturn. The Hospital Board has approved a series of actions designed to improve efficiencies and reduce costs. Among these actions is a planned reduction in force with approximately 16 positions targeted for elimination. The health system currently employs approximately 750 individuals. At the same time, the Board has contracted with a consulting firm to guide the hospital through an exploration of potential partnership opportunities with larger health systems. That evaluation process is expected to take several months.

The year long downturn in the economy has created financial challenges for Beaufort Regional Health System. Hospital patient volumes are declining and there is concern about the impact of potential cuts in Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement and the impact of healthcare reform.

The Board of Commissioners of Beaufort Regional Health System voted on Tuesday to approve a contract with HealthCare Appraisers, Inc. to assist the health system in evaluating strategic options regarding its future. The firm will help the health system explore potential partnerships with larger health systems in an effort to maintain high standards in financial viability and clinical programs. Partnering with larger health systems is becoming a common national trend for hospitals the size of Beaufort County Medical Center.

In addition, the board voted to implement a $1.8 million cost-saving plan. The majority of the cost-cutting measures are being taken in the health system’s medical practices. Costs can be reduced through efforts to renegotiate insurance company contracts, reduce medical malpractice insurance rates and implement a variety of changes and operational improvements. The cost savings also includes consolidating some health system services as well as a modest reduction in force."

(End of information from health system.)

Previous WITN Story:

It could mean big changes to Beaufort County Hospital.

The Board of Commissioners of Beaufort Regional Health System has hired a consulting firm to help the health-care provider plan its future operations which could include affiliation with another hospital system.

One of the options would be to lease the facilities to another hospital system taking over responsibilities.

This decision comes after a difficult year for the medical center which even after drastic cuts lost 1 million dollars this year.

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  • by Disturbed Employee Location: BoCo on May 18, 2010 at 06:39 PM
    I'll probably repeat what most of you said. I think most of the money problems are coming from the new fancy main entrance the hospital now has. How many have seen the ER? It's terrible. The nurses and doctors barely have room to breath. I wonder when our wonderful ignorant administration will decide to put bunks in the ER pt. rooms? A new ER was needed. Not a office so nice it could be used as living quarters for the CEO. Wonder where he got his education from, b/c he's making big money, but stupid decisions for this hospital and the employees that work. The employees keep that hospital running, not Bill.
  • by bcmc employee Location: Washington on May 18, 2010 at 05:25 PM
    I have been an employee for almost 20 yrs and have seen good times and bad. Where is a guy like K. Raglandwhen you need him? He turned this hospital around once and turned Pungo around. When Ragland was here he visited the floors and different units always with a smile and concern. DON's use to visit with their staff. Morale was good most of the time and if it wasn't you better beleive you saw more of them. Running a hospital is a business- I understand that- but you cannot ignore your workers. When financial times were good they spent and spent- not necessarily on the right things-buying all the drs offices and paying docs salaries-sorry but I work for my salary -same should be true for the docs Cut them from the hospital payroll! Let them be responsible for their own income and overhead of office help etc
  • by Employee Location: Boco on May 18, 2010 at 05:04 PM
    Doesn't everyone get it...they don't want to sell out to another company. Not that the other company would want BCMC, but think about it. If you as CEO are running the company into the ground and all the administrative staff back you, don't you think that they will be the 1st to go if another company partners. Of course, so why would the CEO want sell out, he wouldn't because he would be the 1st to go. That's right, him and all the staff that back him 100%. You're cutting others jobs, but making sure you save yourself once again! Oh and by the way, Mr. CEO what happened to the hospital expansion being funded solely by grant money??? Oh was that one of those stretched truths again. That's a shame!
  • by brmc employee on May 17, 2010 at 05:43 AM
    they read this. . .Bill sits in his high dollar office and reads this stuff, don't ya Bill? Kinda closing in you you huh? Words getting out.
  • by Beaufort C. Hospital Emplo Location: Washington on May 16, 2010 at 07:47 PM
    YOU CUT THE FAT OFF THE TOP!!! If not it just runs and drips down and then lays on the bottom!! Get in reality, too many chiefs not enough ingines.
  • by Anonymous Location: greenville on May 16, 2010 at 06:01 PM
    if the ceo is making that kind of money why the employees can't get their hours back 84 to be correct.a lot of workers at medical center depends on their checks and for the big chiefs to sit there and make that kind of money is really unfair cause the way i see it is the nursing asst do more work than the R.N.and get little pay.but the R.N.will tell the cna i do not do that and this.we cna salaries do not compare to others centers that does same work it is sad.but bill and his side kicks can not name over 100 employees cause they do not even show their faces to the people most places every body knows every one we are small so it should be that way.and way i am talking about nurse managers have favorites in staffing and taking sides instead being fair to every one i see this everyday and it is so unfair i love my job and i does it well but enough is enough i hope some body does buy of us cause i want what is due to me and my co-workers.witn needs to come and talk to some of the workers .
  • by YET ANOTH BCMC EMPLOYEE on May 15, 2010 at 02:09 PM
    bill bledsole got a 20% bonus lump sum 2 months ago.investigate before you raise taxes
  • by employee Location: BCH on May 14, 2010 at 01:24 PM
    Do you think the people you are talking about EVEN read what your opinions are...THEY DON'T CARE!!! Now that's the problem.
  • by Another BCMC employee Location: Home on May 14, 2010 at 01:20 PM
    It DOES matter what people make...$300,000 can pay the salary of many minimum wage matter how any one puts on their pants. How many drs are "employeed" by Bill and making that same salary that he makes? That's alot of minimum wage jobs!!!
  • by BCH Employee Location: Washington on May 14, 2010 at 01:13 PM someone says his salary is $300K...does that make it true? Is it a matter of public other county officials?

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