Four months after Bon Secours Health System disclosed a federal investigation, the system said President and Chief Executive Officer Christopher Carney will retire in March 2005. Carney, 57, was named CEO of the 24-hospital Marriottsville, Md.-based system in 1997. In February, Bon Secours revealed that the Securities and Exchange Commission and the U.S. attorney's office in Baltimore were investigating allegations that a former chief financial officer at its Grosse Pointe, Mich., division had intentionally inflated earnings, prompting Bon Secours to restate two years of earnings. "Chris made this decision as part of a larger life decision," Sister Patricia Eck, chairwoman of the system's board of directors, said in a statement. "Though we hate to see him go, we are excited for him as he enters this new era of his life." The system plans to find a replacement by early 2005. Bon Secours is the fifth-largest Roman Catholic system in the nation, according to Modern Healthcare's 28th annual Hospital Systems Survey, which appears in this issue after p. 20.
Hospital employment rises
Hospital employment rose 0.2% in May, reaching 4.3 million, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. For the month, hospitals employed 9,100 more workers compared with April. Compared with May 2003, employment in hospitals was up 1.5%. Employment for all health services and social assistance increased by 36,000 last month for a total of 14.1 million.
Agencies may get funding boost
HHS and the U.S. Education and Labor departments would receive a 2.5% increase in spending for fiscal 2005, under a proposal by House Republican leaders. The spending bill would give programs under the purview of the three agencies a total of $142.3 billion, up from $139 billion for fiscal 2004. President Bush asked for $142 billion in his budget proposal. The House Appropriations Committee, which writes the annual spending bills, must approve the proposal. The Senate has not yet released details about its bills' costs.
In total, House Republicans are proposing $821 billion in discretionary spending for 2005. Mandatory spending is not affected.