Phenix City hospital to reduce staff 20 percent

PHENIX CITY, Ala. (AP) - A privately owned hospital in Phenix City has announced plans to lay off 70 to 80 employees and reduce medical services.

Mark Baker, the CEO of Jackson Hughston Memorial Hospital, said slow collections, low reimbursements from insurers and underperforming medical services had forced administrators to make difficult decisions.

Baker said Phenix City would lose its only hospital if staff and services were not reduced.

He said an effective date for the cuts should be determined in the very near future.

The 62-bed hospital owned by a group of Hughston Clinic orthopedic surgeons employs 308 people.

There will be no layoffs or service reductions at Hughston Clinic or any satellite offices that are part of the hospital's larger organization.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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