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CHS Board Shakeup Sought by Shareholders

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, April 29, 2011

A major investor with Community Health Systems, Inc. is urging fellow shareholders of the for-profit hospital chain to vote against the re-election of three board members --- including CFO W. Larry Cash –- for their alleged improper oversight of Medicare billing practices, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The April 21 letter from William Patterson, executive director of CtW Investment Group was disclosed Thursday morning in a CHS regulatory filing with the SEC.

Patterson asked fellow shareholders to vote "against" the re-election of board members Cash, James S. Ely III, and John A. Fry, at CHS' annual shareholder meeting on May 17 "given their culpability for the growing scandal surrounding proper oversight of Medicare billing practices, which has precipitated a 25% decline in Community's market value."

Tenet Healthcare Corp. earlier this month made allegations that CHS overbilled Medicare by as much as $377 million using medically unnecessary admissions that improved its bottom line and appeal to investors.