Connecticut Hospital Association Declares Code Blue Over Executive Compensation. Sends Verbose Talking Points “In Case This Story Gains Traction.”
Executive compensation remains a sensitive issue in the ineffective precincts of the Connecticut Hospital Association. Pay packets far exceed accomplishments at the trade association headquarters. An article in the Journal Inquirer last week on the gobsmacking salaries hospital presidents take home has the CHA scrambling the jets, Daily Ructions has learned.
Take a look at the sea of blather surrounding an island of one thought: get people other than the hospital presidents to say how important hospitals are. (They are open 24 hours a day! It’s a really complicated job. They make less than bankers.) Here are the talking points a CHA mouthpiece put together to try to douse the gathering storm:
On Monday, the Journal Inquirer ran a story about Connecticut hospital executive compensation. You can view the article here. We would like to share with you talking points about executive compensation, in case this story gains traction.
- Hospital chief executives are responsible for extremely complex organizations. In addition to managing advanced medical services and technology, highly educated and skilled staff, and extensive physical plants, hospital CEOs are responsible for an array of services beyond the hospital including physician groups, primary care clinics, surgery centers, long-term care organizations, and home health organizations.
- Hospital chief executives operate in a highly regulated environment, complying with demanding standards related to quality and patient safety measures, financial performance, medical staff relations, patient satisfaction measures, institutional stability and growth, development, community relations, and community health.
- Hospitals are often the largest employer in the community. Families throughout Connecticut depend on well-run hospitals not only for their health, but also for their livelihood and economic welfare.
- Community hospital boards, which comprise local and community business leaders, are responsible for preserving the mission and financial stability of the hospital. These boards make executive compensation decisions based on independent, professionally prepared competitive market analyses, compensation strategy, hospital performance, and other relevant considerations.
- For not-for-profit hospitals, IRS requirements related to board procedures and documentation help ensure that compensation decisions are reasonable and reflect the best interest of the community.
- Hospitals are unlike any other business and present unique challenges for executives. Hospitals are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, accept all patients regardless of ability to pay, and serve as the healthcare safety net for the most vulnerable among us.
- Despite their significant responsibility for the health and welfare of the community, hospital executives earn a fraction of the salaries paid to top managers in the financial services, banking, and insurance industries.
Other considerations for hospitals regarding executive compensation and its disclosure:
- Incorporate hospital-specific information on policies and procedures in your talking points.
- Prepare a hospital spokesperson with information on executive compensation policies and procedures, general compensation policies and practices, and OHCA and IRS 990 filings.
- Identify a Board spokesperson to speak to the press or others on executive compensation; develop a list of sources for media representatives or others to contact for a broader perspective on hospital executive compensation (consultants, AHA, CHA); prepare/notify those spokespeople and sources.
- Prepare to address staff concerns regarding public release of compensation information; consider employee and labor relations in your messaging.
As always, if you receive media inquiries, we would appreciate it if you would let us know.
Director, Communications and Public Affairs
Connecticut Hospital Association
Office: (203) 294-7213
Cell: (203) 317-1098