350 part-time OhioHealth employees to lose benefits

Columbus-based OhioHealth has notified 350 of its part-time employees that they will no longer be eligible for health benefits, effective at the start of 2016, according to The Columbus Dispatch.

Part-time workers will need at least 24 scheduled hours per week or 48 hours per two-week pay period to continue to qualify for OhioHealth-sponsored health coverage, long-term disability insurance and life insurance. Employees were notified of the change last fall and then given details in a letter this month, according to the report.

OhioHealth has not disclosed how much money it will save annually as a result of the decision.

The system said it is helping employees seeking more hours find other job openings within the organization that provide health benefits. It is also offering outside benefits counseling services to assist employees who need to find new coverage options elsewhere.

The health system, which has more than $2 billion in cash reserves, says it is making this move to ensure its benefits are more aligned with commonly accepted corporate practices and reflect responsible stewardship, according to the report.

The changes will not impact other benefits for part-time employees, such as tuition reimbursement or retirement savings, the health system said.