SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Avera announced its making a $50 million investment in its workforce and raising the Sioux Falls-based health system’s minimum working wage to $17 an hour.
In a news release Wednesday, Avera says the investment in the workforce will “benefit each and every employee in various ways.”
Avera Health President & CEO Bob Sutton said health care is Avera’s No. 1 business and No. 1 priority. He told KELOLAND News Avera puts “our investment back into our people and in our facilities to care for our people.”
“$50 million was a number that was significant enough to make a difference,” Sutton said Wednesday. “And we know that’s an investment into our people that’ll be meaningful and drive results and be a boost to the economy in all 100-plus communities that we’re in across our footprint.”
“The time is right,” Sutton said. “We’re looking at recognition for a job well done for people who have really, really worked hard over the last year and half through this pandemic and have made huge personal sacrifices.”
The Avera Health system has 20,000 employees and physicians, serving more than 300 locations and 100 communities in a five-state region.
Sutton said the money is a retention effort for “caregivers and those behind the scenes to stay with us at Avera.” He said the extra money should help with recruitment and pointed out Avera has “hundreds of open positions” in various positions across the region.