WVU Hospitals Makes AARP’S List of Best Employers for Workers 50 and Over

MORGANTOWN, W. Va. – If three in a row is a dynasty, then chalk one up for West Virginia University Hospitals

For the third straight year, WVUH has made the annual list of 50 AARP Best Employers for Workers Over 50.

“We are pleased to receive this award for the third year in a row as we continually strive to provide the best workplace benefits in the region for older employees,” said WVUH President Bruce McClymonds. “WVUH currently employs 691 people age 50 and over – 17 percent of our workforce – who play an important role in providing our patients the best health care in the region.”

AARP invites employers to apply for the designation by submitting an application describing their exemplary practices toward 50 and over workers. A consulting firm provides a preliminary rating of the applicants, then a panel of nine expert judges evaluates the applications, and their rankings, along with the consultant’s evaluations, lead to the final ratings.

Listening to employee requests, over the last three years WVUH has made several improvements to benefits, adding vision care, long-term care, dental insurance, a cancer income protection plan, health care expense reimbursement accounts, and a mail order prescription policy.  WVUH also increased the amount of PDO employees can roll over to the following year.

For employees approaching their retirement years, the hospital has offered flexible scheduling, such as 8-, 10- or 12-hour shifts, working per diem, job sharing and telecommuting, with employees maintaining full benefits.

Sixty percent of all the Best Employers award winners come from the healthcare sector, including hospitals. Key areas of consideration for the award are: recruiting practices, opportunities for training, education and career development; workplace accommodations; alternative work options, such as flexible scheduling, job sharing, and phased retirement; employee health and pension benefits; retiree benefits, and age diversity of the workforce.

“These employers recognize the importance of creating a mutually beneficial work environment,” said AARP CEO Bill Novelli in announcing the 2006 list of 50 Best Employers.  “Flexible arrangements can be a big part of that positive environment, enabling workers to balance both work and family obligations.”

The awardees will be honored at a dinner in Chicago on September 21. AARP The Magazine will feature the Best Employers winners in its November-December issue.

AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership organization that helps people 50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial and affordable to them and society as a whole.

- WVU -

For more information:
Steve Bovino, HSC News Service, (304) 293-7087

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