HealthSouth Corp. is expected to release new corporate governance guidelines shortly, finalized late last week by the embattled rehabilitation chain's interim management. The new guidelines, approved in a board meeting last Friday, are a move to convince bondholders and creditors of the board's independence. HealthSouth officials declined to discuss the guidelines; however, the Wall Street Journal reported the guidelines would mandate independent committee chairs, a revised conflict of interest policy and board member retirement by age 75, among other changes. The Securities and Exchange Commission has accused Birmingham, Ala.-based HealthSouth and its founder and former CEO, Richard Scrushy, of overstating earnings significantly in the past several years to meet investors' expectations. Former executives cooperating with the SEC investigation have indicated the fraudulent earnings may have totaled nearly $2.5 billion since 1997, about $1 billion more than initially alleged. -- by Julie Piotrowski
HealthSouth to issue new governance guidelines
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