published Thursday, April 24th, 2014

Erlanger vacation time is unfrozen

Erlanger Medical Center
Erlanger Medical Center
Photo by Tim Barber.

After a two-month freeze on vacation time accrual, Erlanger Health System’s 4,500 employees soon will begin building time off again, the hospital’s CEO announced Wednesday.

The vacation time had originally been frozen in early March as Erlanger — more than $3 million in the red at the time — attempted to staunch financial losses.

“I made the commitment to you that once we had obtained federal funding, Erlanger would be in a better position financially, and [paid time off] accrual would be reinstated,” wrote hospital CEO Kevin Spiegel in a memo to employees on Wednesday.

On April 1, the hospital learned that it had received federal approval to access what’s called the Public Hospital Supplemental Payment Pool — a funding mechanism that could allow Erlanger to draw down $30 million through intergovernmental transfers.

Millions more in funds will come from the restoration to Tennessee of a federal program that will provide about $80 million for Tennessee hospitals to care for the uninsured.

Spiegel said hospital leaders anticipate receiving the funding in the coming week.

“I want to thank each of you who made this sacrifice on behalf of our organization during a difficult time,” Spiegel said in the memo.

The paid-time off accrual will resume starting with the April 27 pay period.

Contact staff writer Kate Harrison at kharrison@timesfreepress.com

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