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Kaiser Permanente Laying Off 500-Plus Employees

Kaiser Permanente said the layoffs would be spread across its 65,700 employees and doctors working in offices and hospitals from Kern County to the Mexican border.

One of the nation's largest HMOs is laying off 530 employees in Southern California this weekend, a company official confirmed Saturday.

Kaiser Permanente said the layoffs -- constituting about eight-tenths of
one percent of its employees -- would be spread across its 65,700 employees
and doctors working in offices and hospitals from Kern County to the Mexican
border.

Under its union contracts, the laid-off employees who are in unions will
get income and benefits for a year.

Many may also be rehired next year, when Kaiser Permanente expects "significant membership growth," a statement issued by the company read.

"Health care in America is in the midst of one of the most exciting and
challenging times in its history, the firm said in a statement.

"We have undertaken a series of cost-reduction initiatives to ensure we meet these changing dynamics, and they include some position eliminations.

"It is important to note that none of these position eliminations will
in any way jeopardize the quality of patient care, which is always our primary
focus," the corporate statement read.

Nationwide, the health care industry is undergoing structural changes to
adopt to the new federal Affordable Health Care Act -- commonly called
Obamacare.

Information on the exact layoff locations was not available, a spokesperson said, because some of the affected employees may be offered other vacant positions as it makes staffing adjustments next week.

A union official told the Inland Daily Bulletin that the laid-off employees will be able to take advantage of a retraining and education program that will keep them paid and insured for up to one year.

 

Rob Lasorsa November 17, 2012 at 10:29 PM
I bet those Union bosses are glad that they asked their members to support Prop 30, Jerry Brown, and President OBama. At least the poor people losing their jobs will not have to pay a 13.3% state income tax. Guess what? Do you think that Kaiser Permanente will continue to raise rates to cover the cost of Obamacare? I guarantee it.
Reginia Sam November 17, 2012 at 10:48 PM
Gee what a surprise.(sarcasm).
pmtelt November 17, 2012 at 11:44 PM
Well I suppose we can thank obama for this! obamacare is going to be expensive for companies to manage. Boy am I glad we put him back in office (sarcasm) .
bryce nemehia November 18, 2012 at 02:15 AM
Pluh-Leeeze!!! Gimme a break! Boo-hoo, I can't believe you're attributing this to Obama OR Obamacare! I can't believe you're even serious! No matter what, HMOs ALL suck! The underlying problem is HEALTHCARE FOR PROFIT. It doesn't work, hasn't worked, & will not work. Sure Obama-care is flawed, but a step in the right direction, & by no means solves the main problem (mentioned above) that the rest if the civilized industrial countries have all figured out! :P
Bruce November 18, 2012 at 02:56 AM
Is this the "job creators" (GOTP phrase, NOT mine!) at work again? They even ADMIT that they have no idea where their fortunes are headed, other than an overly optimistic projection, obviously made "From the Chairman's Office". So their response is? CUT EMPLOYEES! Make our service even worse than it already is, thereby ENSURING that they won't be "in the black" next year!
David Rempel November 18, 2012 at 04:27 AM
This is a non-story. First, less than 1% are getting "fired". Second, most of them will be re-hired, either to the same, similar or retrained for different positions. YAWN
Mariana Zuelsdorf November 18, 2012 at 06:56 AM
It doesn't matter what the percentage is, or will be. These are people, not numbers. Laid off just before the holidays. Perhaps, Mr Rempel, you could explain, to the families, that it's a non-story and they are not to worry about it.
Reginia Sam November 18, 2012 at 08:05 AM
I agree Mariana, Kaiser claimed themselves it is because of the Obamacare, and this is just the beginning. At any rate, no one wants to be out of a job. Rehired? Retrained? When? Who knows.
Reginia Sam November 18, 2012 at 08:30 AM
This is just the beginning unfortunately.
Charles Ferrell November 18, 2012 at 02:41 PM
Welcome to Obamacare. All those with Kaiser cards will still have "coverage" for their health care, but because of these cuts, their "access" to that health care will be reduced. Remember, folks, "coverage" and "access" are two different terms. Maybe just about everybody will be "covered" through Obamacare, but their "access" to health care will be greatly reduced as payments to health care providers, such as Kaiser, are reduced. Many small, private doctors have cut back, cut way back, their Medicare Patient load, thanks to government cutbacks in Medicare payments to those doctors. Medicare patents of these doctors still have "coverage," but far less "access." This really is just the beginning. The majority of Americans voted on Nov. 6 for Obama, which meant a vote in favor of Obamacare, the government takeover of medical care in America and the resulting reduced "access" of medical care to Americans. This will especially hurt senior citizens who will see government-mandated reductions in end-of-life care result in expedited end-of-life. It is that way in the European model of government-run health care and it will be coming here. Welcome to Obamacare.
lisa dutra November 18, 2012 at 03:23 PM
I am sick of everyone blaming Obama Care for the loss of every job. We do not blame it when our children are able to stay on our policies till they are 26, or when we try to get insurance and are not turned away for a pre existing condition or when a child exceeds the million dollar cap or when we are now allowed to get a wellness check up and not be charged. It is not perfect, nothing is till you give it a chance so you can work out the bugs. People were losing their jobs as the cost of insurance was going through the roof when Obama took office, we dont comment on that do we. Hey if you don't like our Presidents policies that is fine and good but the day of getting your health care by going to the emergencies rooms had to end. As far as cuts to medicare I have not seen that as of yet and we have Medicare but because we now can have a secondary health care insurance at a reasonable rate we are still doing ok. Lastly, I do not see doctors dropping their Medicare patients and the end of life comment is totally incorrect. It is in our senior days that we are drawing upon the medical world more and the Affordable health care act has removed the cap so we are heading in the right direction. If you dont like the president fin, just say it, but do not blame everything on it. Blame the loss of jobs on CEO's that give themselves big salaries and then ship the Blue and White collar jobs overseas or Captial groups that load a company up with debt and lay people off.
David Rempel November 18, 2012 at 03:41 PM
Read what I wrote, and what the company said. Most will be re hired. The headline is misleading.
Charles Ferrell November 18, 2012 at 03:49 PM
Anyone who hasn't seen the cuts in Medicare hasn't talked to a private doctor who handles Medicare patients. I have. If Obamacare turns out to be the greatest thing than Wonder Bread (oops, wrong comment at this time) then he will remembered in a good way; if Obamacare turns out to be a failure, then President Obama will be remembered for that. Either way, he will be mostly remembered for the way he fundamentally changed America's healthcare system. Whether that is good or bad depends on what happens, how Obamacare really works, what its overall impacts will be on America, Americans. History will judge this episode.
nobodyuno November 18, 2012 at 05:02 PM
Try not having any insurance at all and see how many doctors, private or county, will accept you as a new patient... As far as judging President Obama, history will not judge him near as harshly as bigots and the ignorant have already done and continue to do!!!
Mariana Zuelsdorf November 18, 2012 at 06:57 PM
Oh, I did read what you wrote and also read the article; you made your opinion very clear. The head-line is not misleading. They are laying off 500+ employees. 'Laid off' is just a polite way of saying fired. If you were one of those employees, would you be happy to wait on the chance that you were re-hired, re-trained or whatever? Funny how bills keep coming in the mail, mortgages must be paid. Once the ball begins rolling, it's hard to stop. Homes are lost, homeowners leave the area, stores lose customers, and the ball rolls again.
MARK November 18, 2012 at 07:10 PM
Steve is right. Just get Medi-care and Food stamps and free money from Tax paying AMERICAN'S. Give them all a nice Trailer to live in for $465.00 a month and they don't even speak English when asked a question on the news. Great Job all you American's who voted for Mr. Cool leaving to Tailand. New Yorks and New Jersey what do you have to say to that. Nice Thanksgiving Vacation if you ask Mrs. Cool. Last but far from over. "COME ON MAN!!!!
Mariana Zuelsdorf November 18, 2012 at 07:15 PM
I agree, Charles. In order to stay with our current (private practice) Primary Care physician, we are now paying $3,600/yr out of pocket. Plus we have Medicare, and a supplemental health insurance for which we pay. I may soon be selling apples on the street corner. Private physicians will end up not taking new patients under Obamacare, or cutting back their practice. It's a cattle drive so get in line. Good luck because I think the quality and time with your doctor will suffer. Gee, Steve, people said that same thing about Bush, and we know how he is judged now.
Hal November 19, 2012 at 05:35 AM
Bonus time for the CEO is coming up so they've got to get rid of some jobs to pay for his millions.
Goodbye to loyalty Hello Greed November 19, 2012 at 05:35 PM
I have been in the health insurance for over 20 years. I witnessed premiums going from $180.00 for family coverage to $1500.00 for family coverage. In some cases $1500.00 is a mortgage payment or rent. I sold small business plans, and in the last two years I heard nothing but how premiums are too high and they can't afford both workmen's compensation and Health insurance for their employees, let alone for their own family. The fact of over 500 employees being laid off is just the start of it. As more small business shut down do to being taxed more and having to provide medical for employees and their families means more job loss. As far as medicare goes, My mother in-law who now in her 80's has gone from $0 premium cost to over $200.00 a month plus and increase in copayment and prescriptions. It's just horrible too think of how many seniors received a cut in benefits and higher premiums after working for a company over 30 years. I agree with Hal, Bonus time for the CEO's. Just like giving money to the banks to help people save their homes. What joke more people lost their homes while CEO's received raises and luxury vacations. GREED!
MARK November 20, 2012 at 01:50 AM
Again thank Mr. Cool. You probably voted for him.
William November 20, 2012 at 01:54 AM
Silly bryce Kaiser is a non-profit- So Pluh-Leeeze!!! Gimme a break! Boo-hoo-

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