Apr 10, 2017

The richest CEO in the hospital industry

Penn State / Flickr cc

Yes, we're still in the thick of proxy season — a time of pay data nirvana for business journalists. And a new filing shows who the highest-paid CEO in the hospital industry is: Alan Miller of Universal Health Services, a chain of 319 behavioral-health and acute-care hospitals. He made more than $51.3 million in 2016, based on the amount of stock and option awards that actually vested. (Alan's son, Marc, is president of UHS and made $7.2 million.)

Context: This is not to be confused with the methodology Steven Brill used for his stories on hospital CEO pay. His investigations focused on earnings for each day a patient spent in the hospital, which is a different metric. Miller has the highest overall earnings, based on the proxies I've reviewed.

The UHS controversy: Rosalind Adams published an investigation for Buzzfeed in December and interviewed scores of current and former UHS employees, who said they were pressured to fill psychiatric beds "by almost method" and to hold patients "until their insurance payments ran out." UHS disputed the article and said it led to an "inaccurate portrayal" of its psychiatric operations.

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