Consultant’s Report on University Health Services

GEO has learned that Vice-Chancellor Jean Kim is demanding that the departments under her (including University Health Services, Student Development, and Residential Life) hire consulting firms in order to cut costs.  University Health Services was the first area to hire a consultant, and GEO has the report, which outlines the reasoning behind recent cuts to the Student Health Insurance Plan, staffing and hours.

This report, by Hodgkins Beckley Consulting, includes usage statistics and recommendations on outsourcing those services of UHS which do not produce income, which the University has stated will lead to the elimination of 21.5 full-time equivalent positions.

The entire report and executive summary are available below.

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November 1 UHS announcement on staff cuts and hours reductions

From: UMass University Health Services <official-uhs@admin.umass.edu>
Date: November 1, 2011 3:23:52 PM EDT
To: massmail-l@oit.umass.edu
Subject: Changes at University Health Services

To the UMass Amherst campus community,

As an evidence-based organization in the rapidly changing healthcare
field, University Health Services (UHS) constantly evaluates its
programs and services, industry trends and the economic environment, to
ensure the provision of high-quality care in a fiscally responsible
manner. These ongoing assessments have revealed the need for several
changes, which we are sharing with you today.

  • Beginning Nov. 1, 2011, UHS will be closed on holidays when students
    are not in residence; this includes Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, New
    Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Day, Memorial Day and July 4th.
  • During the upcoming intersession, Dec. 17, 2011 – Jan. 22, 2012, UHS
    will be open seven days a week, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Beginning May 12, 2012,
    summer and intersession hours will be Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Visit the Residential Life website,
www.housing.umass.edu/hao/earlyarr.html, for hall opening and closing
information; the Registrar’s Office posts the university’s academic
calendar at www.umass.edu/registrar.

  • Effective Jan. 23, 2012, UHS will be open weekdays, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.;
    weekend hours will be noon – 4 p.m.
  • Medical and mental health telephone triage services will remain
    available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, at (413) 577-5000. As always,
    those with a life-threatening emergency should call 911 for ambulance
    transport to a hospital.
  • Effective with the close of the spring semester, UHS will increase
    the volume of tests performed by its current external reference
    laboratory; collection of lab samples and limited testing will continue
    on-site. Concurrently, UHS will cease operating its independent
    pharmacy.

With increasing healthcare expenses and declining insurance
reimbursements, cost-effective services have never been more important.
These shifts are expected to reduce UHS’ expenses by approximately $1
million annually.

For timely information about UHS services, programs and events, visit
our website, www.umass.edu/uhs. Should you have questions, you may also
call our administrative offices, (413) 577-5211.

Sincerely,

Bernette A. Daly, Ed.D.
Executive Director, UHS

Daily Hampshire Gazette: “UMass scales back health services in cost-cutting move”

UMass scales back health services in cost-cutting move

By CHAD CAIN
Staff Writer

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

AMHERST – The health services unit at the University of Massachusetts Amherst will eliminate 10 percent of its work force, losing more than 21 full-time positions, close its pharmacy, reduce laboratory services and scale back evening and weekend hours between now and the end of the academic year.

The changes are intended to save University Health Services about $1 million a year, money that will be used to help offset current operating expenses and fund future facility renovations and technology enhancements, according to UMas[s] officials.

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