Secrets of the Job Hunt


Sunday, November 09, 2008

Medical Jobs Transfer As Relocation of Florida Hospital Announced

Citing budget cuts and the nation’s ongoing economic crisis, Shands HealthCare of Gainsville, Florida will relocate its programs and services in one year, according to a hospital press release.

Operations now housed at Shands AGH will move to Shands at the University of Florida and its cancer hospital, which is scheduled to open next fall.

While some medical jobs may be lost, the goal is to place as many of the 1,150 Shands AGH employees as possible within the Shands HealthCare system. Most employees will be invited to move to Shands academic medical center at the University of Florida, as programs are transferred there. Shands AGH employees who do not move to Shands at UF will have other opportunities among the new jobs created by the cancer hospital and at other facilities.

In 2007, Shands AGH lost more than $12 million as federal and state funding was slashed, reimbursements from government programs and private insurance companies dropped and patient volumes declined.

“We’ve struggled over how to offer the best care to our patients and community given our health system’s existing resources,” said Timothy Goldfarb, Shands HealthCare CEO. “A poor financial outlook ahead and growing healthcare-industry challenges have forced us to make this very difficult decision.”

For years, physicians moved their practices to the west side of Gainesville and, in many cases, their patients moved with them. Efforts to bring in new patients and expand high-demand services have failed.

Shands HealthCare has invested more than $86 million in renovations, repairs and equipment at Shands AGH. Over the next five years, Shands would need to invest another $50 million just to maintain its upkeep. Continuing to invest in the facility is not the best use of limited resources.

At the same time, the demand for charity care rose dramatically. Just last year, Shands HealthCare as a system spent more than $115 million providing charity care to area patients. This sum doubled in the last four years. Given the economic climate, that number is likely to increase further.

The changes are part of an effort to cut $65 million from the Shands HealthCare system budget over the next three years to offset major anticipated shortfalls.

No comments: