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Shriner's Hospital for Children to end inpatient care at Tampa facility, layoff some staff

System said majority of Tampa employees will not be affected; telemedicine and partnerships will be tools to help reach patients in region.

Beth Jones Sanborn, Managing Editor

Courtesy: Shriner's Hospital for Children-TampaCourtesy: Shriner's Hospital for Children-Tampa

The Shriners Hospital for Children will end inpatient care their Tampa facility, citing changes in the demand for services and a national trend toward outpatient care.

The Tampa hospital will still offer clinic visits, rehabilitation, wheelchair services and clinic visits for prosthetics/orthotics. The conditions they treat will also remain the same, as will surgical staff and the process for referring and scheduling patients.

Shriners Hospital Tampa said they would also use telemedicine and potential affiliations with other healthcare organizations to reach children throughout the region.

THE IMPACT

The change will be effective August 1 and will result in some staff layoffs, though the system would not say how many.

"The majority of our employees will not be impacted. For those that will be, they have already been notified and offered assistance in finding a new position," a spokesperson said.

THE TREND

Tampa will be the fifth Shriners hospital to convert to an outpatient facility. The system has been providing specialized pediatric care for more than 30 years. The system said the move is in response to the decline in demand for overnight/inpatient medical care and the national trend towards more outpatient-oriented care.

It also said advances in orthopedic procedures have reduced the amount of time patients need to remain in the hospital after surgery.

ON THE RECORD

"As an organization, Shriners has been able to use charitable donations to provide care to all patients. We have a responsibility to ensure these donations are spent in a way that sees the most patients treated with the highest quality of care in the most efficient manner. We are very thankful for the generous support of our many donors," the system said through a statement.

Twitter: @BethJSanborn
Email the writer: beth.sanborn@himssmedia.com