Talks between Windham Hospital, union reach impasse

October 01, 2015

Cornerstone proposal moves forward

Despite 11 scheduled meetings since August with the American Federation of Teachers Union, Locals 5099 and 5041, Windham Hospital has been unable to reach an agreement with the unions on proposals to create a sustainable future for Windham Hospital. The negotiations have reached a stalemate and further discussions would be futile, so Windham Hospital has declared an impasse in discussions.

We have stressed throughout these discussions that the financial situation at Windham Hospital is dire, and the need for real-time action is essential. Every day we delay in implementing process improvements to allow us to reduce costs, Windham Hospital is literally losing more money.

This need for action became even more urgent last Friday, when the Governor imposed an unanticipated reduction in Medicaid payments for services we already provide below cost. By the state’s own accounting, those cuts will mean an additional $1.7-million loss for Windham starting now. That is on top of Windham losing approximately $25 million over the past five years (expenses exceeding revenues), and millions of dollars of anticipated losses this year.

We had hoped to partner with the Federation of Teachers in a good faith effort to develop a plan to save jobs and services. We are disappointed that our efforts did not result in an agreement.
As a result of the impasse, we will begin implementing Windham’s proposed Cornerstone services plan, which was created prior to the most recent cuts to Medicaid and is currently being analyzed. Services determined to be cornerstone services at the time include:

  • 24-hour emergency care
  • Inpatient care
  • Cardiology services
  • Oncology care
  • Inpatient and outpatient surgical services
  • Women’s health services
  • Diagnostic imaging
  • Community benefit programs such as school-based health centers, nutrition and diabetes education and paramedic services.