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Nonprofit U.S. Hospital CEO Compensation Varies Widely

Nonprofit U.S. Hospital CEO Compensation Varies Widely

Compensation tied to hospital technology deployment and patient satisfaction

TUESDAY, Oct. 15 (HealthDay News) Nonprofit hospital chief executive officer (CEO) compensation is associated with technology and patient satisfaction, but not with processes of care, patient outcomes, or community benefit, according to a study published online Oct. 14 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Karen E. Joynt, M.D., M.P.H., from the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, and colleagues characterized CEO compensation based upon 1,877 CEOs at 2,681 private, nonprofit U.S. hospitals. Associations between a hospital's performance on financial metrics, technologic metrics, quality metrics, and community benefit in 2008 and CEO pay in 2009 were assessed.

The researchers found that CEOs had a mean compensation of $595,781 (median, $404,938) in 2009. CEO pay was associated with the number of hospital beds overseen ($550 for each additional bed), teaching status ($425,078 more at major teaching versus nonteaching hospitals), and urban location. CEOs at hospitals with high levels of advanced technologic capabilities were compensated $135,862 more, compared to hospitals with low levels of technology. CEOs at hospitals with high performance on patient satisfaction were compensated $51,706 more than those with low performance on patient satisfaction. There were no associations between CEO pay and hospitals' margins, liquidity, capitalization, occupancy rates, process quality performance, mortality rates, readmission rates, or measures of community benefit.

"Compensation of CEOs at nonprofit hospitals was highly variable across the country," the authors write.

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