About 1,650 Trinity Health employees will see their current positions relocated or outsourced in the coming years as the system transitions to the Epic electronic health records platform.
The not-for-profit health system plans to relocate some of its revenue cycle employees to three consolidated billing offices in Michigan and Ohio and outsource some of its information technology employees to its application management services vendor, Leidos.
The changes coincide with Trinity's Epic implementation, which is scheduled to extend through 2022, with the system's first hospital go-live in Michigan in January 2020.
"This is not imminent," said Cynthia Fry, Trinity's chief revenue officer. "It's a journey in the revenue cycle space."
Under the change, 1,200 of Trinity's revenue cycle employees who are not located in Michigan and Ohio and who focus on back-office functions such as billing, collection and follow-up will be asked to relocate to newly consolidated patient billing centers in Kentwood, Mich., Farmington Hills, Mich. and Columbus, Ohio. Trinity chose those cities after considering its hospital locations, real estate costs, mean wages and cost of living. The health system will cover employees' relocation costs.
The change does not affect revenue cycle employees who work in areas like registration, coding and clinical documentation improvement.
Employees who don't want to move will be eligible for re-training for other positions within the health system or with its vendors, Fry said. Trinity will create new jobs in performance management and training. It will also offer severance pay and outplacement services like career counseling and resume development to those who decide not to move.
"I want them to find a place that they feel fits for them and matters to them, whether it's doing something different within Trinity, whether it's us helping them find something within Trinity or relocating and supporting our new centers," Fry said.
Another 445 Trinity employees who work in information technology will be asked to transition into employment with Leidos that offers the same pay and similar benefits. That's because those employees work in a suite of applications that will be shut down in a few years once the system goes live with Epic, said Marcus Shipley, Trinity's chief information officer.
Once with Leidos, those employees will likely work on other Leidos accounts, which could entail travel, Shipley said.
"These colleagues have developed and honed great skills over the years, and I am confident that Leidos is the partner that's going to help them put that to work long term," he said.
Trinity has not disclosed how much its Epic implementation will cost, but Shipley said none of the changes announced Wednesday are happening for financial reasons. He said the partnership with Leidos allows Trinity to ensure future, long-term employment for employees whose applications will ultimately be shut down. He said he does not believe the number of employees outsourced to Leidos will grow beyond 445.
The affected Trinity information technology employees will work both in Trinity facilities and at home, Shipley said, adding that many of them already work remotely, "so I think that's something they'll fit into nicely."