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Washington Regional brings back all furloughed employees

by NWA Democrat-Gazette | July 25, 2020 at 7:03 a.m.
Washington Regional Medical Center in Fayetteville. (NWA Democrat-Gazette file photo/DAVID GOTTSCHALK)

FAYETTEVILLE -- All of the Washington Regional Medical Center employees who were furloughed in April will be back at work by early August, according to a statement from the hospital's president.

The hospital furloughed 305 employees because of a drop in revenue. Hospitals in the state halted most elective procedures early in the covid-19 pandemic to prevent the spread of the virus and conserve supplies.

"Over the ensuing three months, Washington Regional has brought 288 of those employees back to work as the virus surged in our community and necessitated additional resources," according to a statement from Larry Shackelford, president and chief executive officer at Washington Regional.

The employees who remain on furlough will be back at work starting Aug. 2, according to the statement.

Shackelford said Wednesday at Gov. Asa Hutchinson's daily news briefing that National Guard soldiers were on site helping the hospital at its covid-19 call center. The center screens callers for the virus, allowing health care workers to focus on patient care.

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