Mayo Clinic Health System to cut 82 medical transcriptionist jobs
Mayo Clinic Health System plans to cut 82 medical-transcriptionist jobs in seven southeastern Minnesota communities.
Health system spokeswoman KristyJacobson said the jobs will be eliminated March 31.
Medical transcriptionists transcribe doctors' reports to update patients' medical records with the latest information after medical appointments, tests and hospital stays.
More than half of the affected workers are from Austin and Albert Lea, including 18 jobs to be eliminated in Austin alone — and 26 in Albert Lea. The rest are spread among the remaining five communities.
In March, the Health System will begin using a contract service with transcription-company Amphion Medical Solutions instead of maintaining its own transcription staff.
But the news might not be quite as grim as it first seems.
Jacobson said by email thatAmphion Medical Solutions "has also indicated it would like to discuss job opportunities within its company with each transcriptionist should the employee choose to do so."
Amphion is "a transcription services business serving health care organizations across the United States," according to a Mayo Clinic Health System announcement.
As medical providers nationwide seek to consolidate and cut costs, Mayo Clinic Health System's move is not a surprise and has been floated as a possibility for months. Now, employees have been informed that, indeed, the time is near.
"Staff are our greatest asset and decisions that may impact staff are not taken lightly," the health system announcement says, noting "leadership is committed to helping impacted employees every step of the way."
Mayo Clinic Health System human-resources representatives plan to meet with affected workers to offer assistance with transfers to jobs within Mayo Clinic Health System or to new positions with other companies.
To put the job eliminations in context, Mayo Clinic Health System as a whole has 14,920 employees, Jacobson said in response to a Post-Bulletin inquiry.
The job eliminations, therefore, equate to .00547 percent of total staff.
According to Mayo, technology updates "will ultimately reduce the demand for transcription services."
Amphion has a previously established working relationship with the Mayo Clinic Health System and offers "high-quality, efficient and cost-effective transcription solutions"
The cuts could represent a jolt to individual communities. But the number of affected employees is small in context with the health system's overall employment numbers.
Health reporter Jeff Hansel writes the Pulse on Health column every Monday. Follow him on Twitter @JeffHansel.
Albert Lea — 26
Austin — 18
Owatonna — 17
Faribault — 4
Cannon Falls — 4
Lake City — 8
Red Wing — 5