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CHS chief gets higher bonus despite company's struggles

A hospital sign with the sky in the background.
Community Health Systems owns more than 120 hospitals. Photo: Anders Clark / EyeEm via Getty Images

Community Health Systems CEO Wayne Smith made $5.9 million in 2017, down about 18% from his pay in 2016, based on actual realized stock gains in the company's latest proxy document. Smith's 2017 pay included an $810,000 cash bonus, 27% higher than 2016, which was tied to the hospital chain's revenue and undefined "performance improvement."

The bottom line: Smith got a bonus that was 13 times higher than his employees' median compensation — even though the system is hemorrhaging money, selling off hospitals and struggling with debt that has ballooned from a hospital merger that Smith regrets making.