LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - After a one-two punch like the COVID-19 pandemic and Hurricane Laura, some hospitals and clinics are faced with having to lay off some of their employees.
Many satellite buildings of the Lake Charles Memorial Health System sustained damage, specifically the Archer Institute and the Moss Memorial Health Clinic.
According to hospital officials, this damage led Memorial Health to lay off about 8% of its workforce.
Secretary of the Louisiana Workforce Commission Ava Dejoie says they were notified of the layoffs.
"We did receive a WARN notice - a worker adjustment retraining notification - notifying us of a mass layoff at one of the hospitals there,” Dejoie said.
In a statement, the Memorial Health System said, "It will take many months to get all of our facilities completely repaired. We have no choice but to adjust our basic staffing to meet the current demand of the health system.”
To continue to serve the community, Dejoie says some clinics may start to operate in unconventional ways.
“People do creative things with necessity,” she says. "We would see mobile health clinics, so a lot of clinics in mobile units and those kinds of things. I think in the interim, you’re probably going to see those sorts of things in Lake Charles as more people come back.”
She also says these layoffs don’t mean the medical sector can’t bounce back.
"Projections overall from year to year continue to show growth in that sector.”
The statement from Memorial Health also says that as they work to recover, their hope is to be able to bring back as much of their team as possible in the future.