NC Health System to Offer Domestic Partner Benefits

October 14, 2011 ( - Western North Carolina's largest employer will start offering domestic partner benefits to same-sex couples, effective Jan. 1, 2012.

Mission Health System’s policy change is intended to help its hospitals retain the best staff possible, says Janet Moore, director of marketing and Web services, according to Mountain XPress. She notes that regional competitors across the Southeast such as Duke University Hospital in Durham, Novant Health in Winston-Salem, and Emory Adventist Hospital already offer such benefits.

“When we looked at what other comparable systems are offering, it made a great deal of sense for us,” Moore said. “We don’t necessarily compete Duke for a lot of patients, but we do for staff.”

Moore reports that the administration isn’t sure how many of the system’s roughly 7,000 current employees will be affected by the change, or how much it will cost, the news report said.

The city of Asheville started offering domestic partner benefits to same-sex couples earlier this year.