Kaiser is making more staff cutbacks in Hawaii during the pandemic, according to an official filing with the Hawaii Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.

Forty-five employees at The Kaiser Foundation Hospitals and Kaiser Foundation Health Plan were notified of their layoffs in late October, according to the nonprofit’s notice. The Kaiser Foundation initially laid off 29 employees on Aug. 13.

Employees include data analysts, medical records clerk, pharmacy and quality assurance positions, financial and data analysts, and project managers.

Kaiser Permanente Hawaii Kai clinic closed temporarily during the pandemic. Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2020

“We never take decisions like this lightly,” Kaiser Spokeswoman Laura Lott said in an email to Civil Beat. “The people affected by these changes have made important contributions, and we are committed to providing them with outplacement services as well as severance payments, extended medical benefits and other assistance.”

The layoffs are the latest sign of financial struggles faced by the hospital-insurer, which covers more than 250,000 people in Hawaii. In a memo obtained by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser last year, President Ron Vance anticipated budget cuts and losses projected this year.

The organization temporarily closed seven clinics earlier this year due to the pandemic.

Other Hawaii hospitals are making changes to their staff.

Adventist Health Castle laid off one medical staff associate on July 29 and plans to permanently lay off 32 dietitians, food service associates, cooks and nutritional specialists, effective at the end of December. Food Service management company Sodexo is expected to offer positions to “most affected employees,” said Todd Reese, Adventist Health’s Human Performance Director.

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