'All other options have been exhausted': UW Medicine furloughs 1,500

UW Medicine will furlough 1,500 employees to help address an anticipated $500 million loss due to COVID-19, the Seattle-based organization said May 18.

Affected employees will be furloughed for at least one week and up to eight weeks. During the furlough, employees will retain healthcare benefits.

"Any actions that impact our workforce, even temporarily, are taken only when all other options have been exhausted," said Paul Ramsey, MD, UW Medicine CEO. "While there are still many unknowns ahead, we believe furloughs combined with the other steps we have taken will put us in the best position to preserve jobs and continue to support the excellence of UW Medicine’s clinical, research and education programs."

The furloughs will affect professional and nonunion staff members. UW Medicine said executive leaders, directors and managers will also take furloughs. 

UW Medicine also notified unions of its intent to furlough some members.

UW Medicine said the financial hit is a result of a dip in clinical revenue due to the cancellation of elective procedures coupled with increased expenses to boost diagnostic testing and acquire protective gear.


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