Pioneer Press, August 26, 2010

Children's Hospital says it plans to eliminate 200 to 250 jobs by mid-November, citing a drop in patients, an increase in expenses and a troubled financial outlook.  COO David Overman announced the cuts this week in a letter to employees. Overman wrote that the hospital, which includes campuses in St. Paul and Minneapolis, is experiencing a number of financial stresses this summer, including lower reimbursement from health plans and government programs.  "For the first time in many years, Children's reported a negative operating margin through July, and it's projected that we will also report a negative operating margin for calendar year 2010," Overman wrote in a letter obtained by the Pioneer Press. Children's hopes to minimize layoffs by seeking early retirements and not filling open positions. In 2009, the hospital had the equivalent of 3,154 full-time employees.  The news comes as a number of Minnesota hospitals are reporting declines in the number of patients they are treating. In the first quarter of this year, hospitals in the state saw a 4.4 percent decline in admissions.
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