Ct. task force challenges hospital exec salaries

Connecticut's 31 hospitals have been struggling financially in recent times, of that there is little doubt. In fact, according to a report issued in late 2006, more than half of the state's non-profits ran deficits, and the rest generated below-adequate surpluses. Along the way, they've begged for help from the state, which they say has been paying far too little for low-income patients covered by state insurance programs. The question being raised by a state task force, however, is whether these same hospitals should have been paying their chief executives steadily mounting salaries during the same period. 

Salaries paid to top execs at the state's hospitals grew 95 percent between 2002 and 2006, with some topping $1 million, according to a task force convened by Gov. M. Jodi Rell. For example, Hartford Hospital President and CEO John Meehan made just over $1 million in 2006, up 27 percent from 2002, the task force noted. It also cites Robert Kiely, CEO of Middlesex Hospital in Middletown, whose salary climbed 82 percent, from $511,220 in 2002 to $932,923 in 2006. The hospitals, meanwhile, say they must compete with national salary levels to recruit top talent.

To find out more about the salary question:
- read this Hartford Courant piece

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