Alabama hospital workers' health coverage at risk after system misses payments

Healthcare workers at Eutaw, Ala.-based Greene County Health System may see their health benefits terminated, according to local news station WVUA 23.

Four things to know:

1. Roughly 50 employees in a union agreement with the health system are slated to lose their health and welfare benefits after GCHS failed to make proper contributions to a health fund, according to the report. Employees were notified of the change through a letter sent by the United Food and Commercial Workers Union.

2. GCHS Board Chairman John Zippert confirmed the impending benefit change to WVUA 23. While the payments to the health fund were late, Mr. Zippert told the news station the system is caught up now.

3. The health system is weighing its negotiation options, including a new agreement with the union, moving the employees under the hospital's more expensive insurance policy, or turning affected members toward the ACA marketplace. Still, the hospital said if it doesn't make cuts somewhere, it could be forced to close.

"Around 150 people get a paycheck from Greene County Health System," Mr. Zippert told WVUA 23. "We want to keep it open so we can keep paying them. That is part of our goal. It's not our entire goal. Our first goal is to provide quality healthcare, and we know we need satisfied and dedicated employees to do that."

4. The coverage is set to be terminated for the 40 to 50 GCHS employees by Jan. 31 if a resolution is not reached.

More articles on healthcare finance:
Zuckerberg hospital is out of network with all private insurers, leaving patients with massive bills   
Pennsylvania hospital misses payroll for 9th time since August   
California medical group to shut down after Molina cancels contract    

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