Just a day after its $7.6 billion sale to Community Health Systems was finalized, Health Management Associates told state officials that it planned to lay off 395 people by the beginning of April.
HMA made the announcement to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity Jan. 29. So far, it is the largest job cut of the year reported to the agency.
The cuts, however, are not expected to affect Bayfront Health Dade City, or most of the other hospitals in the chain.
“There is no impact on jobs at former HMA hospitals … as a result of the merger,” CHS spokeswoman Tomi Galin told The Laker/Lutz News. “The hospital names and leadership teams remain the same, and most importantly, patients can continue to count on these hospitals for high-quality care, delivered by the physicians and employees they already know and trust.”
The announcement, however, was based on what Florida requires companies to do by law to any potentially impacted employees of restructuring. This particular notice focused on corporate employees for HMA based in Naples, including many who do not actually work in Florida, Galin said.
The notice, known as a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification — or WARN — also includes about 100 people who are being offered jobs with the new ownership, as well as those who have chosen to leave the organization voluntarily, but did not plan to give notice until after the sale of the chain closed.
“As a result, even though the WARN notice indicates that approximately 400 jobs are affected, many of these individuals will have jobs in our organization, or have already found other jobs,” Galin said.
The purchase of Health Management Associates, first announced last July, included what was then known as Pasco Regional Medical Center and 22 other hospitals in the state. Before the sale, CHS had just two hospitals in Florida, the closest in Lake Wales.
As part of its acquisition, the Federal Trade Commission required CHS to put two hospitals in Alabama and South Carolina up for sale.
Bill Hussey is overseeing the company’s new hospitals in Florida. He has a bit of an indirect connection with the Dade City hospital because he was the Tampa Bay division president when Columbia/HCA owned the Dade City facility.
He would later become chief executive officer of Gulfside Medical Development. Hussey has been with CHS since 2001, and will manage hospitals for the company not just in Florida, but in Georgia and South Carolina as well.
The 120-bed Bayfront Health Dade City was originally founded in 1973 as Community General Hospital, and has had various names over the years. It was known as Pasco Regional Medical Center soon after HMA acquired the hospital in 2000 for $17 million.
It’s located at 13100 Fort King Road in Dade City.
Published Feb. 19, 2014