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For-profit hospital execs in TN score huge payday

The Tennessean, June 1, 2011

HCA Holdings wasn't even publicly traded last year, but hefty payouts to CEO Richard M. Bracken and other investors lifted the hospital company leader's annual pay package to the top of the corporate heap statewide in Tennessee. With CEOs of hospital chains leading the way, the average compensation for the top executives among Tennessee's major companies rose 24%, according to an analysis by executive compensation data firm Equilar Inc. Bracken's overall pay package jumped 212% to $38 million last year, reflecting mostly money that HCA paid out as dividends to investors who took the company private four years ago and then back to trading stock on Wall Street this spring. CEO/Chairman Wayne T. Smith of Community Health Systems, with a $21 million pay package, and CEO/Chairman William F. Carpenter III of LifePoint Hospitals, at $8 million, join Bracken atop the list of well-paid executives in the Nashville area.