Wesley Medical Center administrators are implementing changes in the organization’s pay structure starting next month.
While some employees will see pay increases, others will see decreases as the hospital makes changes in its differential pay – the premium workers sometimes get for working night and weekend shifts. In the past, differential pay was a percentage of an employee’s base pay. It will now be a flat rate.
The hospital employs about 2,800 people, and about 2,000 of them will see a net increase in take-home pay, said Nick Adams, vice president of marketing and public relations at Wesley.
The hospital anticipates the changes will increase the total amount paid toward salaries by $2.35 million over last year.
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Via Christi Health implemented a similiar change to differential pay in February. At the time, Via Christi officials said the pay increases system wide totaled about $9 million.
“Like most employers, we’re market-based and have to make changes to policy that are in line with the market and with (Hospital Corporation of America) practice,” Adams said. “We want to fairly compensate employees for the great work they do, but we also have to be good financial stewards.”
Additionally, all employees will be eligible for merit increases of up to 4 percent. Staff will also be eligible for $1,000 bonuses if they obtain additional certifications that go beyond their current level of expertise. New nurses will also get an automatic pay increase after one year as an incentive to stay with the hospital, Adams said.
Adams was uncertain if administrators would be eligible for pay increases.
Hospital officials are meeting with staff individually to explain how the changes will affect them, Adams said.
“It’s important everybody understand the ‘why’ behind what we’re doing,” he said.