Sources said HealthSouth Corp., Birmingham, Ala., will name a new chairman today or Wednesday, most likely Robert May, a current director and the company's former acting chief executive officer. Acting Chairman Joel Gordon, who agreed to serve in the position during the company's turnaround and until a permanent management team could be named, is expected to remain a director and receive the chairman emeritus title. HealthSouth, struggling to recover from a multibillion-dollar accounting fraud, recently tapped former HCA executive Jay Grinney as its new CEO. In another step toward recovery, the company said it has obtained all required consents for proposed amendments and waivers to conditions on its $2.6 billion in public debt. The consents, for which HealthSouth will pay investors $73 million to $80 million, eliminate a threat that investors may demand early repayment of the company's debt because it hasn't met reporting requirements while dealing with the fraud.
Meanwhile, HealthSouth confirmed that it is advising the six American employees at its 450-bed rehabilitation hospital in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to leave the country. Recent attacks against Americans have led the U.S. State Department to warn U.S. citizens working in the region that they may be in danger. -- by Julie Piotrowski