ASHLAND– The Kentucky Career Centers of the TENCO Workforce Area have deployed a Rapid Response Team to assist displaced Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital employees with transition services and job-search resources.
Jeremy Faulkner, the Director of Business Services and Economic Development Initiatives for the TENCO Workforce Innovation Board, said that TENCO has been in communication with OLBH leadership since the 214-bed hospital announced they would be closing by the end of September.
Bon Secours Health System, which owns the hospital, announced at the end of January “it will be exiting acute and outpatient care in the Ashland and Tri-state communities,” resulting in the closing of the hospital, its physician network, fitness center, and other related facilities.
1,226 employees will be affected by the closure.
Faulkner said that TENCO have begun planning group employee meetings in coordination with OLBH leadership to educate those affected on their services, programs, and monies available to dislocated workers. TENCO’s Ashland Office is located at 1844 Carter Avenue, and is available for OLBH employees Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Those in need of information are urged to call (606) 920-2024.
TENCO serves 10 counties: Bath, Boyd, Bracken, Fleming, Greenup, Lewis, Mason, Montgomery, Robertson, and Rowan, and has additional offices in Maysville, Morehead, and Mt. Sterling.
Faulkner said that TENCO will assist OLBH employees with filing unemployment insurance claims, educate those affected about re-training options, provide information on job-seeking for those who haven’t applied for a job in some time, interviewing skills, online job-searching, and updating their resume.
Faulkner said that TENCO is also working with other regional healthcare organizations to find OLBH employee’s new positions.
“TENCO is helping coordinate networking events and job fairs with these regional healthcare companies,” said Faulkner. “Already, dozens have been held and hundreds, if not north of 1,000 interviews have been conducted, and hundreds of job offers extended.”
Faulkner said that TENCO has services that will assist every employee affected.
“We want to try to coordinate with everyone, regardless of what their situation may be, to see what’s going to be most appropriate for them.,” said Faulkner.
Faulkner said that staff with TENCO will work with individuals who won’t be remaining in healthcare, such as those retraining for a new career, or exiting the workforce completely, to find appropriate resources.
For those unable to access the Carter Avenue office location, TENCO will soon be onsite at OLBH. Faulkner said that TENCO is still discussing with OLBH leadership when those trainings will be held.
“We are here to try and help,” said Faulkner. “We don’t have all the answers, but we do have resources, we have a network of agencies and organizations that want to help. We will be onsite soon, but until then we encourage people to reach out to us on our website and social media.”
OLBH’s Warn Notice to the Kentucky Dislocated Workers’ Unit, dated, Feb. 12, states that the hospital, and Bellefonte Physician Services LLC, will permanently close its entire operations in Ashland and surrounding areas as of March 31. Layoffs associated with this closure are expected to begin on March 31. The schedule of layoffs will continue through April 14. Additional sites impacted by the closure are:
Bellefonte Tri-State Pediatrics
Bellefonte Urological Association
Bellefonte Foot Care
Bellefonte Primary Care Grayson
Bellefonte Digest Disease Center
Bellefonte Surgical Associates
Ironton Primary Care
BPC Ashland Bellefonte Peds
Ashland Family Medicine
Tri-State Neuro Solutions
Bellefonte Women’s Care
Cardiology Outreach Bellefonte Heart Care
Bellefonte Arthritis Center
Bellefonte Primary Cannonsburg
Cornerstone Medical Plaza
Bellefonte Pediatrics Russell
KY Good Help ACO LLC
BPC South Shore
T. Robert Love MD
Bellefonte Pulmonary Associates
Bellefonte Oncology Associates
Bellefonte Family Medicine
Canos and Canos
Ironton Urgent Care
Those wishing to learn more about TENCO workforce development services can visit them online athttps://tencocareercenter.com/or Facebook.com/kentuckycareercentertenco.
For additional information on the WARN Notice, employees are urged to contact Carolyn Stevens, HR Director, at606-833-3484or Carolyn_Stevens@bshsi.org.