Prospect Medical Connecticut hospital lays off staff

Los Angeles-based Prospect Medical Holdings-owned Waterbury (Conn.) Hospital has notified 26 staff they will lose their jobs at the facility. Seventeen of the 26 are in clinical positions including patient assistants and surgical technicians while the remainder are non-clinical, Prospect said.

The news follows the elimination of travel nurses in the hospital's emergency department, according to a Republican American report. Patient care assistants are responsible for such tasks as blood work and monitoring patient vitals while surgical technicians work as part of a team delivering surgical care.

The hospital is one of three facilities in the state Prospect Medical is looking to sell to Yale New Haven (Conn.) Health and one of the 16 hospitals nationwide affected by a recent ransomware attack on Prospect.

All the clinical staff affected have been offered open positions within the company and 20 of the 26 total staff members affected have taken up new roles, Prospect Medical said.

Concerns have been heightened that such cost-cutting practices may affect patient care at the hospital.

"They are basically trying to squeeze as much as they can out of Waterbury Hospital and they are not putting any money into the hospital," said Frank Marcella, a registered nurse at Waterbury Hospital. "Prospect Medical Holdings does not care how their money-saving decisions affect the community of Waterbury."

Prospect Medical said it stands behind its investment in the Waterbury community in the past several years.

"We stand proudly behind our track record of supporting and investing in our hospitals and communities in Connecticut since acquiring Eastern Connecticut Health Network and Waterbury Hospital in 2016," the system said in a statement provided to Becker's.

Editor note: Updated to include clarification on the number of positions affected and further comment from Prospect Medical.

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