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    Indicted hospital CEO’s golden parachute: $6.3 million

     

    Former CEO Ken Beverly, who pleaded not guilty last week to Medicaid fraud, walked away from his Thomasville hospital gig with a payout of $6.3 million, tax records show. Plus expenses.

    A federal grand jury this month accused Beverly, who retired in 2008 as chief executive of Archbold Medical Center, of defrauding Medicaid of more than $9 million.

    An April 8 indictment charges that Beverly and CFO Williams Sellers falsified records to make it appear that Archbold was a public hospital. The deception allegedly earned Archbold $4 million-plus in supplemental funds that it didn’t deserve and $5 million-plus from the Indigent Care Trust Fund.

    Under Medicaid rules, hospitals must be operated by a public hospital authority to qualify for the extra money. The Thomasville Hospital Authority leases the premises to the medical center but does not have operational control.

    Beverly and Sellers submitted falsified minutes of meetings that made it appear that the authority ran the hospital, the indictment alleges. In fact, prosecutors say, the authority met only once in four years.

    The grand jury also charged that Beverly pressured Sellers to lie about the CEO’s involvement with the falsified minutes. The indictment contains this excerpt of a January 2008 conversation between the two men:

    WS: Uh, let’s just make sure if they approach me to discuss this with me, I understand from my talks and your talks before with me, that if I keep my mouth shut about any knowledge you have, about those minutes, that you’ll do your best to take care of me on my contract. Is that  …

    KB: I’ll do, I’ll do my dead level best.

    WS: OK, I mean we talked about it a couple of times, and we have talked about it, I was …

    KB: They’re going to ask me if we discussed the case, and I’ll tell them, ‘No we hadn’t.’

    A few weeks later, the indictment alleges, Beverly called Sellers at 4 a.m. and met with him at 6 a.m. to discuss an investigative report that implicated Beverly:

    “The report is going to show that, that you accused me of being involved from day one to the end of time on the whole thing. That part, uh, we don’t need to try to destroy each other.”

    Beverly retired in February 2008 and Sellers, who had been suspended, resigned the next month. Sellers pleaded guilty in February 2009 to three charges of falsifying records and is awaiting sentencing.

    Tax records show Beverly pocketed $6,328,579, plus nearly $32,000 in expenses, in 2008, his last year at Archbold Medical Center. Sellers collected $656,663 that year, according to the non-profit hospital’s filing with the IRS.

    A hospital spokesman said Monday that Beverly received no severance pay when he left the hospital.

    “Most of the reported compensation [for Beverly] related to retirement benefits accumulated over many years of service,” said Mark D. Lowe, the hospital’s director of marketing and public relations. “The … figures accumulate several types of potential forms of compensation in addition to salary alone, including benefits, performance incentives and retirement benefits.”

    Wonder if they’ll make him pay it back.

     

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