Cypress Health Region expecting large financial surplus due to staff shortages

Written by  Matthew Liebenberg
Cypress Health Region expecting large financial surplus due to staff shortages

The Cypress Health Region is projecting a surplus of $3.6 million at the end of the 2014/15 financial year.

Cypress Health Region Chief Financial Officer and Vice-President Corporate Services Larry Allsen provided his final update of the current financial year at the Cypress Regional Health Authority meeting on April 8.

The main reason for the large surplus is the staffing shortages at health-care locations throughout the health region. These shortages translate into a saving on staff salaries and benefits, which will increase from around $1.1 million in the previous financial year to an expected $2.9 million at the end of the current financial year.

“We’re recruiting all the time,” he emphasized. “It’s not like we’re trying to save money or trying to create these big surpluses. Our job is to care for our residents and we’re trying to get the bodies to do that and it’s a challenge right now.”
He noted it has become difficult to recruit staff for almost every position, including maintenance staff, at rural health care sites.
“I’ve never seen it quite like this before — to be honest,” he said.

Allsen will be providing details about the budget for the 2015/16 financial year at the next Cypress Regional Health Authority meeting in May.

He described it as a status-quo budget. The health region did not receive any increases in the provincial budget that was announced in March.

“We got funded for our collective bargaining agreements that we’ve had with one union right now,” he said. “I’m actually surprised at the number, that it wasn’t a lot worse, because leading up to it we were hearing so much about oil and the impacts on the budget. … I believe we’ll balance our budget. I don’t think that we’re going to have any trouble doing it, it’s just going to take some work.”

via SW Sask News – Prairie Post – Prairie Post http://ift.tt/1b6S0ax

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