Central Oregon hospitals, healthcare centers prepare for COVID-19

A tent goes up outside the emergency room entrance at St. Charles Redmond on Friday, March 13, 2020 in preparation to triage incoming patients with COVID-19 symptoms. 

St. Charles Health System has reported it lost $39 million in revenues from canceling elective surgeries in response to COVID-19 and executive team members volunteered to take a 10% pay cut through the end of the year, according to a hospital announcement.

In addition, the four-hospital system increased its spending by $6.5 million to purchase extra hospital beds, personal protective gear, screening tents and supplies, ventilators and new technology for virtual visits.

“We need to take action to improve our financial stability, but we are absolutely committed to doing that in ways that have the least impact on our caregivers,” said President and CEO Joe Sluka said in a prepared statement.

The hospital system also will allow:

  • Temporary reduction in hours, unpaid time off and a summer sabbatical to caregivers who qualify;
  • Caregivers in non-patient areas to take unpaid time off during extended closures around the Fourth of July, Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays

The health system has set a goal to “break even” for two months by the end of 2020. But even if St. Charles is able to hit that benchmark, current projections show the organization may still lose more than $50 million this year.

Staff report

(2) comments

Funding Secured

Good work St Charles. Move in the right direction. Next step is hardball with the private practitioner groups. $50m short is worth the fight.


I don't understand what you mean by the private practitioner groups - do you mean the suppliers who price gouged? I think of private practitioner groups as groups of physicians, but don't know they have anything to do with the losses.

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