Layoffs planned at deficit-burdened Kern Medical Center

Layoffs planned at deficit-burdened Kern Medical Center »Play Video
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BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) — Following a meeting with the Kern County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, Kern Medical Center CEO Russell Judd told Eyewitness News the hospital faces job cuts amid ongoing financial issues.
 
Judd said the hospital is trying to determine how many jobs will be cut after the hospital lost $3.4 million in February, and faces about a $30 million shortfall for its current fiscal year that ends in June.
 
"An element of minimizing that loss is going to be a reduction of the number of people at Kern Medical Center," Judd said. "The reduction is to match staffing to the number of patients that we have. ... If there's not patients to care for, we don't need to have people on the payroll."
 
Judd said new staffing practices have helped reduced its monthly deficit, with early financial estimates for March project a $2.2 million loss.
 
However, Judd added that layoffs are inevitable at this point.
 
"These are people who need their job to feed their families, to support their families, to meet their needs, so we take this very, very seriously," Judd said. "The process we're going through is very deliberate. It's very thought-filled, so that we make the actual right decisions because we are impacting people."