April 02, 2020
Portsmouth, Rochester, and Derry, NH — Frisbie Memorial Hospital, Parkland Medical Center, and Portsmouth Regional Hospital, as part of HCA Healthcare, one of the nation’s leading healthcare providers, is announcing a comprehensive effort to protect its colleagues during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Over the past few weeks, Portsmouth Regional Hospital, Parkland Medical Center, and Frisbie Memorial Hospital have experienced a decrease in surgery and outpatient volume as a result of COVID-19, leading to a reduction of hours for many staff members. In response, HCA Healthcare announced a new Pandemic Pay Continuation Policy to help protect the financial security for front-line caregivers at all facilities. It applies to all HCA Healthcare employees, including those at Portsmouth, Parkland, and Frisbie.
Parkland Medical Center, Frisbie Memorial Hospital, and Portsmouth Regional Hospital will attempt to redeploy staff with reduced hours who work in clinical facilities or support areas so they can keep working. Those who cannot be redeployed will receive 70 percent of base pay for up to seven weeks until HCA Healthcare better understands the long-term implications of this pandemic on the organization. A similar plan is being implemented at all corporate offices.
“The nation and New Hampshire are facing an unprecedented time filled with uncertainty on so many levels,” stated Dean Carucci, Portsmouth Regional Hospital CEO. “We wanted to make sure that one of those uncertainties for our colleagues was removed and, most importantly, for them to know that we will care for them like family. If we are to emerge stronger and more resilient as a healthcare system serving the southern New Hampshire and greater New Hampshire Seacoast, we recognize that this cannot happen without supporting all of our colleagues through these trying times.“
For those working in patient care facilities who are quarantined per CDC guidelines, Portsmouth Regional Hospital, Parkland Medical Center, and Frisbie Memorial Hospital will pay 100 percent of base pay for scheduled hours regardless of where the exposure took place. Colleagues who do not work in a patient care facility and are quarantined per CDC guidelines will be eligible for short-term disability while they are ill.
Portsmouth Regional Hospital will provide scrub laundering for those who care for COVID-19 patients to help prevent potentially carrying the virus home on clothing. In addition, the company is working with major hotel chains to provide free housing for caregivers to COVID-19 patients who prefer not to go home to loved ones after their shift.
Other benefits and programs already in place include options for child or elder care, free Doctors on Demand telemedicine to assist those who cannot get in to see their regular provider, HCA Hope Fund grants for colleagues with financial needs, and emotional support and counseling services.
In addition, HCA Healthcare announced that its senior leadership team will take a 30 percent cut in pay until the pandemic passes. HCA Healthcare CEO Sam Hazen will donate 100 percent of his paycheck for eight weeks to the HCA Hope Fund, and other senior leaders will make significant contributions. Similarly, HCA Healthcare’s Board of Directors has waived their cash compensation for the remainder of the year, allowing the company to make an additional contribution to the HCA Hope Fund.