Westerly buyer L&M lays off 22

PROVIDENCE, RI – New London-based Lawrence and Memorial Hospital is moving forward with its bid to acquire Westerly Hospital, despite a recent round of layoffs. L&M spokesman Michael O'Farrell says the nonprofit L&M was forced to reduce costs in several areas, including laying off 22 employees, to close a budget gap of more than three million dollars for the current fiscal year. But he says the hospital plans to strengthen its position not only with cost reductions.

"One of the things that we're trying to do, like many other hospitals, in addition to reduce costs, is increase revenue. And quite frankly the potential acquisition of Westerly is a way for the corporation to increase revenue," said O'Farrell.

O'Farrell says L&M's bid to acquire Westerly is awaiting approval from the attorney general and department of health.

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