MercyOne Central Iowa is instituting a minimum wage for its staff of $15 an hour, effective April 4, the health system announced to its employees today. In an internal memo shared with the Business Record, MercyOne Central Iowa President Karl Keeler indicated that employee input had influenced the decision to move to $15 an hour. "MercyOne truly benefits from our colleagues and the talent, expertise and compassion you deliver every day," Keeler wrote in the memo. "Your contributions are always important, and the COVID-19 pandemic has further highlighted the significance of the work you do to serve our patients, families and one another."  MercyOne Central Iowa, which operates four not-for-profit Catholic medical centers and two specialty hospitals, has more than 7,000 employees and a medical staff of more than 1,000 physicians and allied health associates. In January, competing health system UnityPoint Health raised its minimum to $15 systemwide, a move that raised the pay for about one-third of its 30,000-person workforce. Last week, legislation to enact a phased-in increase in the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour by July 1, 2025, failed to survive the first bill funnel.