GREENSBORO, N.C. — Cone Health is giving $40 million in pay raises and bonuses to employees throughout the hospital.
Employees will get a 3% pay raise across the board and bonuses of up to $750. For those involved in direct patient care, the pay raise would be up to 6% and bonuses of up to $1,250. There is a 4% pay raise for clinical and ancillary support staff and a 6% raise for acute care RNs and LPNs. The pay bump is not for people who are already covered by the director, executive, or physician pay structures. It will go into effect throughout October.
“At Cone Health we are there for one another, we support one another like family. Yet this pandemic takes so much of that away,” said Cone Health CEO Dr. Mary Jo Cagle. “The bonuses and raises are our way of telling our team members, ‘Your unwavering commitment and support have not gone unnoticed. We appreciate you. We care for you. We can’t thank you enough for answering the call to care for our communities in this time of need.’”
Cone Health's Chief Operating Officer Mandy Eaton said pay adjustments typically happen at the beginning of the year, but the hospital is giving these out early.
"Our employees have sacrificed their safety and that of their families to ensure that our communities remained cared for and that's not gone unnoticed by us," said Eaton. "So it's important to us that we recognize that and it's also important to us that our community matches our team members' commitment to fighting COVID."
Eaton said she hopes the community sees that getting vaccinated is the best way to protect themselves and, in turn, help hospital staff. Eaton said hospital leaders worry about burnout and people leaving the health care field.
"We're constantly recruiting and bringing in talented staff to keep up with the demands brought on by the pandemic," said Eaton. "But our nation is facing a critical shortage of health care providers and this was the case before COVID and COVID really accelerated that and amplified that shortage for us."
Eaton said that the raises are just one aspect of incentives for employees. Staff members are offered an annual incentive when the hospital achieves its "patient goals." There is also a "rewards and recognition program" that allows hospital leaders to give rewards on the spot to their employees.
“Staffing is a challenge," said Eaton, "We know Cone Health is a great place to work. We care about one another and this action is just one of the many ways we’re trying to show that.”
According to Eaton, the hospital is continuing to offer more mental health support, including counseling and encouraging staff to take time off.
"We know it is so important to be able to recharge, to rest, to spend time with our loved ones, and enjoy our lives outside of work," said Eaton. "When we do that, we bring our fuller selves to our work and caring for our patients in our communities."