Banner Health cuts exec pay, plans to furlough up to 7% of employees

Phoenix-based Banner Health on April 20 announced it is taking several actions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including executive pay cuts and redeploying and furloughing some staff. 

The health system said it is redeploying employees who have seen a reduction in work due to elective surgeries and other nonurgent care being put on hold. "To date we have redeployed more than 1,500 team members to support COVID-19-critical needs throughout the organization," Banner said. 

The health system is also pausing hiring for many positions, offering a voluntary unpaid sabbatical program, which 376 employees are participating in, and is implementing a short-term furlough program. Banner anticipates 5 to 7 percent of employees will be furloughed. Some may be furloughed for only a few weeks, the health system said. 

Banner said it will continue to pay for medical, dental and vision coverage for employees who are furloughed and those who choose to take a sabbatical. The health system is also giving front-line staff a one-time bonus in July based on hours worked with COVID-19 patients in March, April and May. 

Beginning in May, Banner Health's senior leaders, including senior vice presidents, presidents, vice presidents and CEOs, will take a pay cut of up to 20 percent. The senior leadership team has also contributed $100,000 to a fund that provides financial support to employees. 

"We are doing our very best to be nimble, responsive and supportive of our team members' needs as conditions rapidly change during the COVID-19 pandemic," Banner said. "We remain committed to them while providing reliable, quality care for our patients and maintaining a safe environment for all."

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