Health care companies facing coronavirus crisis cut pay to workers

Hospitals lost income by canceling elective procedures

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As many health care workers get used to a new normal working around the clock to combat the coronavirus pandemic in the U.S., some health care companies are furloughing workers and delaying benefits.

Boston Medical Center has furloughed 10% of its workforce, which adds up to approximately 700 workers.

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"Although furloughed employees will cease to work temporarily, they will remain in active status with the expectation of returning," a Boston Medical Center spokesperson told FOX Business. "All furloughed employees are eligible to use their vacation and sick time. The furloughs apply mostly to administrative employees."

Such tough decisions come as hospitals and other facilities cancel elective procedures and lose that income because of coronavirus.

Nurses stand in protest in front of Research Medical Center Wednesday in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

The cuts don't only apply to health care workers in the Northeast, where the virus is hitting hard. Texas-based hospital operator Tenet Healthcare confirmed to FOX Business that it's postponing its 401(k) match program that benefits workers across the U.S.

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THCTENET HEALTHCARE24.50+3.26+15.35%

"Every effort is being made to help bring us all through this crisis, and we have made the decision to direct additional resources to meet the increased demand for healthcare services, address evolving patient needs in our hospitals and protect front-line staff," a spokesperson for Tenet, a publicly traded company, told FOX Business.

In addition, national emergency medicine staffing company Alteon Health is suspending paid time off and cutting pay for administrative employees and executives, STAT reported. Another national company, Steward Health Care, has furloughed an unknown amount of workers, the Boston Globe reported.

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The companies' decisions come as President Trump has floated the idea of "bonus" or hazard pay for doctors, nurses and other health care workers, most recently at Wednesday's White House coronavirus task force briefing.

FOX Business' inquiries to Alteon and Steward were not returned at the time of publication.

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