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Expensive Health Care Due to Hospitals Paying Executives High Bonuses

Updated on August 19, 2010

I used to think of hospitals as non-profit organizations that were understanding and compassionate. But sadly, over time I realized that was not always the case; words like understanding and compassion flew out the window when I saw patients or their families nearly in tears because a collection agent was belittling them about not being able to pay their bill; all the while a fat cat is down the hall sitting behind a fancy mahogany desk counting the days until they collect their bonus. As far as the hospital being a non-profit organization; well, I guess it’s easy to be considered non-profit when you are paying out huge bonuses and salaries to executives.

In 2009 a healthcare group in North Carolina made public the salaries and bonuses of its top executives. The Chief Executive of one hospital received almost $2 million in bonuses, over $900,000 in base salary, plus $543,000 for retirement, health benefits and other compensation. Follow the links below to read articles about some of the top paid executives and how the hospital justifies it.

Don’t get me wrong, I do realize that the bosses, CEOs or whatever their title may be have stressful jobs, but I ask is it more stressful than nurses? The average salary for North Carolina RNs ranges around $73,000.

Not to get off the subject of health care but just for comparison a Teacher in North Carolina with a bachelors degree and 32 years of experience makes around $52,550. The link listed immediately below shows the public school salaries for North Carolina. This information was a lot easier to come by than that of the hospital executives. It almost seems as if the hospitals have something to be ashamed of; then again, maybe they do because 2 million in bonuses seems like a large amount to pay just one person. Many of us would like to make that much money but who really needs that much?

Now with the health care reform and the governments concern of lowering the cost of health care I’m surprised that the substantial bonuses and salaries that some hospitals pay out have not been in the media more and if the subject does become popular with the media, will it do any good or will the hospitals continue to justify these outrages amounts.

So in closing there are a few things that I’m left to wonder about: how much help does the government really plan on giving when it comes to lowering health care cost? Would some of the cost not be lowered if these obscene bonuses and salaries were scaled back? And last but not least; where do hospitals get the large sums of money needed to pay these bonuses and salaries? Do they pass the buck to insurance companies and therefore make health insurance so high that many can not afford coverage?


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    • JON EWALL profile image

      JON EWALL 7 years ago from usa

      Angie Faucher


    • Angie Faucher profile image

      Angie Faucher 7 years ago from North Carolina

      Thanks to all of you for taking the time to read this hub and posting your comments.

    • Deni Edwards profile image

      Deni Edwards 7 years ago from california

      You make a wonderful point, and I completely agree with the ridiculous salaries. There are a multitude of reasons why this happens.

      As for the healthcare bill, I am such the nerd that I read every single bill---yes, tens of thousands of pages. It started out as awesome with HR 3200 and became extremely watered-down with each newer version, simply because so many people were ill-informed about the legislation. Pelosi's comments, I believe, were taken out of context. By listening to what she had stated, in the entire speech before the media, she was saying that people would realize, once the bill passed, what benefits are contained in it and how it changes healthcare for the better. Though, it could have been much better.

      Thanks for your hub. People need to realize all the reasons why healthcare costs are high, and this is one reason that is not talked about too often. (Rated up)

    • JON EWALL profile image

      JON EWALL 7 years ago from usa

      Angie Faucher

      One should recognize that there is a difference between the private sector and the public government sector (TEACHERS )employees. Private sector companies compete for business and are more competitive in the market place. The public government sector has 0 competition and is supported by taxpayer funding.

      Let's not forget that government regulations have an impact on healthcare cost of medical services and drug manufactures that need to facture into cost charged to the public.

      There are 14.5 million unemployed workers who are not in the insurance pool today due to the recession. When the insured pools shrink, the cost to insurance providers goes up. President Barak Obama said '' we need to get more people paying in the pool for healthcare cost to go down ''.In essence he meant that younger citizens would be forced to purchase insurance (even though they didn't want to )in order to increase the size of the paying pool

      The recent passage of the Healthcare Reform bill on 3/23/10 will make an impact on healthcare cost to the taxpayers and the insurance providers. Before the bill was passed, President Obama and Democrat leaders stated that the bill will reduce future deficits and that healthcare cost will go down. Now that the bill has been in effect, many of those who told the public that healthcare costs would go down are recognizing that cost will go up. Let’s remember speaker Pelosi saying ‘’ we need to pass the bill to know what is in the bill’’. Really, can we believe that statement coming from a leader of our government.

    • LRCBlogger profile image

      LRCBlogger 7 years ago

      Well companies and hospitals do have smart leaders (albeit evil at times). They are spreading the false fact that Health care cost is going up because of what will happen due to Health care reform. In the meantime, they are seeing record profits and are paying huge money to their execs.