UW Medicine announces layoffs of 100 staff members

UW Medicine announces layoffs of 100 staff members

SEATTLE — UW Medicine on Tuesday announced the layoffs of about 100 staff members due to financial challenges during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

A spokesperson for UW Medicine said the majority of workers impacted by the layoffs and department challenges have been notified, and remaining notifications will be completed in the next two weeks.

>> Previous coverage: UW Medicine estimates $500 million loss by end of summer due to pandemic

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“This was a difficult decision, and we sincerely regret the hardship this will create for the employees affected by these layoffs,” said Lisa Brandenburg, president of UW Medicine Hospitals & Clinics.

Officials said the layoffs were based on an extensive review of programs at UW Medicine’s hospitals and clinics to find ways to cut costs while maintaining care sites for patients.

Officials said they have reorganized work and have consolidated programs including:

  • UWMC therapies.
  • Lab medicine/phlebotomy.
  • Population health.
  • Enterprise records and health information.
  • Information technology.
  • Voluntary psychiatric care.

“As a critical provider of health care in the Pacific Northwest, we recognize the need to allocate resources in new ways so that we can continue to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and meet all of the health needs of our patients,” Brandenburg said.

The layoffs include those previously announced as part of the closure of the UW Medical Center-Montlake voluntary psychiatric unit.

In May, UW Medicine announced a series of actions to help address the financial impacts of the pandemic. Officials said the actions, including furloughs and salary reductions, has helped save about $92 million.

UW Medicine also says it has secured about $180 million in reimbursements from federal and state funding.

Officials said restarting surgeries and procedures, resuming in-person clinic visits and continual seeking additional federal reimbursements are being done to assure financial stability.

About 28,000 people work for UW Medicine.