Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News) - The Mayo Clinic today announced plans for coronavirus-related pay cuts and furloughs affecting Mayo employees at the end of the month.

Mayo previously furloughed some of its contract and supplemental staff but issued a guarantee to its regular staff that their pay and benefits would be maintained at normal levels through April 28th even if they were not required to work. That is now changing.

A news release issued today states some furloughs and salary reductions affecting Mayo employees will occur following that date. The health care provider, which is the largest private employer in Minnesota, says it has been taking steps to cut expenses but additional measures are needed to address a dramatic drop in revenues. Mayo stressed it will ramp up its operations as soon as possible to limit the duration and impact of the disruption on its staff.

Mayo Clinic spokesperson Ginger Plumbo had this response to an inquiry from KROC News, “While Mayo Clinic has been financially successful, like other health care services organizations, Mayo operates with a low margin. Without intervention, Mayo Clinic would experience $3B in operating losses, which would jeopardize its ability to fulfill its mission and would compromise Mayo's future. Financial reserves cannot support the organization through the projected period of the COVID-19 impact. We have committed $900M of reserves to cover losses associated with COVID-19”.

The news release also notes the loss of revenue has been accompanied by additional spending on coronavirus testing, research into treatments and vaccines, and preparing its facilities to handle an influx of COVID-19 patients.

Senator Carla Nelson (R-Rochester) issued the following statement regarding the Mayo Clinics announcement of layoffs, pay reductions, and revenue losses:

Mayo isn’t just the largest private employer in the state; it is one of the most important organizations in the fight against the coronavirus. When the state had a huge backlog of tests, Mayo stepped up and cleared it out. They are a world leader advancing treatments for the virus, like convalescent plasma therapy, antibody testing, and vaccine development. If anyone is going to get us out of this crisis, it will be Mayo.

“Mayo has stood tall in service to our state and has not asked for financial support for these actions. In order to recover from this crisis faster, I am seeking state financial relief for Mayo for this short time. Support for Mayo now will be in the long-term best interest of our state as they tackle the coronavirus pandemic, inspire hope, and contribute to our health and wellbeing by providing the best care to every patient.“

News Update:  COVID-19: Nearly 34,000 Minnesotans Have Been Tested So Far

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