SCHENECTADY Cost cutting efforts by health insurer MVP Health Care led to 22 Schenectady employees being laid off earlier this month, with 48 employees let go across the entire company.
The layoffs come about two months after 63 employees in the company took an early retirement option, which was also done to cut costs and save money.
"We looked at what things we could do to restructure and still serve the best interests of our customers," said company spokesman Michael Traphagen about the layoffs. He maintained that the latest layoffs wouldn't necessarily have been prevented by more employees taking the early retirement option and stressed there wasn't any target number of employees the company was hoping to reach with the retirement offer.
The layoffs span all types of jobs in MVP, with no one department getting "heavily hit" compared to another.
"The objective was to cut administrative costs in a manner where we were better able to allocate the resources we have to customer services and customer needs," Traphagen said.
The decision to head down this path comes after the company has pursued other cost cutting measures, such as system integration with computer systems following a company consolidation, reduced travel, elimination of some consulting costs and less money spent on paper and postage.
MVP employs about 1,000 people in the Capital Region, with 1,700 employees across the Northeast. MVP's Schenectady main office, which houses nearly all their Capital Region employees, is located on State Street.
Traphagen said they are not anticipating additional layoffs will be needed in the future and don't expect to see any change in the services the company offers.
In 2011, MVP requested approval from the state to raise its health insurance premiums in response to rising health care costs that were making it more expensive for them to operate. A rate increase was approved, but not at the level the company had hoped for. Traphagen said that this decision by the state did not contribute to the company's decision to layoff employees, as the request was born out of their "commitment to properly price their product."