Glendale Hospital

Glendale Adventist Hospital laid off 21 employees this week. (Cheryl A. Guerrero / Staff Photographer / June 28, 2012)

Glendale Adventist Medical Center laid off 21 employees Thursday in response to federal healthcare payment reform and other industry shifts, hospital officials said.

The cuts — which primarily affected non-clinical employees, including several clerical positions — account for less than 2% of the hospital's workforce of more than 2,500 people and won't affect direct patient care, hospital spokeswoman Alicia Gonzalez said.

“It doesn't affect bedside patient care at all,” she said.

The layoffs are part of a broader strategy that includes initiatives to deal with the effects of lower federal payments for services, according to the hospital.

“Our goal is to become a more effective and efficient healthcare facility,” Kevin A. Roberts, president and chief executive of Glendale Adventist, said in a statement. “We gave significant thought to this decision as a response to the difficult reality we face with declines in payments and industry shifts.”

He said that while the hospital tried to make adjustments through attrition and postponement of filling vacancies when possible, some layoffs were necessary.

“The declining federal payments cannot support the staffing levels that we currently have,” Roberts said. “We are confident that our current strategies are moving us in the right direction.”

Laid-off employees were offered severance packages and access to medical insurance for up to six months, according to hospital officials. They may also apply for other positions available within the Adventist Health System.

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