Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa Shriners hospital cuts staff, considers expansion of rehabilitative care

TAMPA — Tampa's Shriners Hospital for Children has laid off 20 people and reduced the hours of about a dozen others in a move administrators say will save the hospital about $2.5 million next year.

The cuts last week came from across the hospital, which previously employed the equivalent of 170 full-time people, and they included administration and staff. Only one physician was laid off and no surgeons were cut, said regional hospital administrator David Ferrell.

The Shriners pediatric care network includes 22 hospitals nationwide, in Canada and in Mexico, the first built 90 years ago when polio was rampant. The hospitals have since specialized in orthopedic and burn care. They take in children without insurance.

For most of its history, Shriners hospitals were completely funded by charity and interest on stocks, but times changed.

Medicine and technology costs increased. A trend toward outpatient care hurt the hospitals, which had focused on long-term care. A poor stock market took a chunk out of the Shriners Hospitals' endowment.

Two years ago, Shriners hospitals started accepting insurance and Medicaid. That move, along with a focus on fiscal efficiency, is helping the system get through tough times.

The changes have been "quite a challenge," Ferrell said, adding that laying people off is always unpleasant. But he pointed to Shriners' mission: The hospitals still accept children without insurance.

Tampa's 60-bed hospital will have a $13 million operating budget next year.

Ferrell says the cuts at Tampa's location will not affect patient care. Administrators expect to admit the same number of patients and provide the same services.

In fact, they hope to expand.

Ferrell says he has met with Tampa Bay area hospitals, looking for gaps in care that Shriners could fill. One answer: rehabilitative care.

Because Shriners has a history of inpatient care, its Tampa hospital could take in children who have been treated for acute issues and just need a little more recovery time before they go home, Ferrell said.

That could include a child receiving intravenous fluids or one recovering from a head injury, he said.

"We don't look to be profitable hospitals," Ferrell said. "That's not our mission. But if we can help reduce the drain on our endowment, then hopefully it can grow in more stable times."

Jessica Vander Velde can be reached at jvandervelde@tampabay.com or (813) 226-3433.

Tampa Shriners hospital cuts staff, considers expansion of rehabilitative care 08/08/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 8, 2012 7:27pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Watch: Sarasota vlogger goes on viral rant against MTV's 'Siesta Key'

    Blogs

    Looking forward to MTV’s Siesta Key? Well, this Florida native definitely is not.

    Vlogger Louie Carey posted his reaction to MTV's "Siesta Key" in a viral video.
  2. On the Camino de Santiago, Day 23: Of tiny towns, wonderful naps and dreamlike ice cream bars

    Travel

    Day 23: Murias de Rechivaldo to Foncebadon: 20.8 km, 6 hours. Total for Days 1-23 = 541 km (336 miles)

  3. Where Tampa's national championship ranks among the greatest games ever

    Blogs

    If you needed any more convincing that Tampa's national championship at Raymond James Stadium was one of the best games in college football history, let me direct you to

  4. In Florida a year ago today, Trump asked Russia to find Clinton's emails

    Blogs

    A year ago today, at his golf club in Doral, Donald Trump begged Russians to find Hillary Clinton's emails.

  5. Bealls and West Marine to join Pollo Tropical at redeveloped Kmart site in Clearwater

    Economic Development

    CLEARWATER — The long-vacant shopping plaza on Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard, formerly home to Kmart, is nearing completion, bringing a handful of well-known retailers to the area.

    The long-vacant shopping plaza on Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard, formerly home to Kmart, is nearing completion. .JIM DAMASKE   |   Times