MANCHESTER, Conn. (AP) _ Eastern Connecticut Health Network has eliminated 48 jobs and reduced the hours of five other employees as it faces what it describes as significant financial challenges.

The Journal Inquirer of Manchester reports ( ) the nonprofit’s cuts in recent weeks follow others made last fall as it prepares to seek regulatory approval of its purchase of a for-profit buyout firm based in California.

Vice president and spokeswoman Nina Kruse said Tuesday that the latest round of reductions was not influenced by the decision to acquire Prospect Medical Holdings. Prospect owns 14 hospitals in California, Rhode Island and Texas.

The cuts affect management and other administrative employees within the health network, which owns Manchester Memorial and Rockville General hospitals. Kruse says they’ll reduce 24 positions and not fill 14 vacant positions.