Piedmont Hospital’s employees will now get a starting wage of $11 per hour, 50 percent higher than the federal minimum wage, officials announced May 18.

The raise will apply to all employees of Piedmont Healthcare, which operates seven hospitals in Georgia and various physician practices and corporate services. The flagship hospital is located in Buckhead on Peachtree Road and employs more than 5,000 people, according to the hospital’s website.

About 250 current Piedmont Healthcare employees will benefit from the increase, a release says, and all future employees will receive the new wage. The hospital did not have a previous standard starting rate in place, but a spokesperson said the lowest starting wage was $9.25.

“Increasing the starting wage does more than help us attract and retain the best talent,” Kevin Brown, the CEO of Piedmont Healthcare, said in a press release. “This is about taking care of the people who help us take care of others. Our employees are dedicated to making a positive difference in every life they touch and this is one way we can improve their lives,” Brown said.