West Virginia hospital lays off 25 employees

Fairmont (W. Va.) Regional Medical Center laid off 25 employees Sept. 18 amid a decline in patients, according to TV station WDTV.

The layoffs involve nondirect patient care positions, Executive Vice President Michael Sarrao, a spokesperson for Calif.-based Alecto Healthcare Services, which owns the hospital, told the station.

"Like a lot of hospitals, Fairmont has had some declines in patient volumes," he added. "As we adjust for those declines, we did some reorganization within the administrative functions and eliminated 25 positions, which resulted in 25 people being laid off."

The layoffs at Fairmont come as Ohio Valley Medical Center in Wheeling, W.Va., and East Ohio Regional Hospital in Martins Ferry are closing. Both hospitals are also owned by Alecto.

But Mr. Sarrao dispelled any thoughts that there could be plans to close Fairmont. He told WDTV the layoffs there are "really an effort to fortify Fairmont so it can continue to serve the needs of the community for the years to come."

When announcing the planned closures of Ohio Valley Medical Center and East Ohio Regional Hospital, President and CEO Daniel C. Dunmyer cited mounting financial losses and also blamed a local competitor's alleged violations of the Anti-Kickback and Stark Law.

Mr. Sarrao said although Fairmont struggles with Medicaid reimbursement, like many hospitals, Fairmont has different challenges and "a different set of circumstances" than the other two hospitals.

Alecto purchased Fairmont in June 2014. 


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