Daily Rounds: Drug Co. Money Flows To Docs; Recalled Walmart Peas May Contain Glass; How To Live To 100; Organizing Boston Hospitals

Docs on Pharma Payroll Have Blemished Records, Limited Credentials – ProPublica “Drug companies say they hire the most-respected doctors in their fields for the critical task of teaching about the benefits and risks of their drugs. But an investigation by ProPublica uncovered hundreds of doctors on company payrolls who had been accused of professional misconduct, were disciplined by state boards or lacked credentials as researchers or specialists.” (ProPublica)

And here’s another, related story:

Mass. doctors earn drug firms’ dollars – The Boston Globe “While some doctors who gave speeches once or twice during 2009 and 2010 earned $2,000 to $3,000, more than two dozen Massachusetts psychiatrists, endocrinologists, and other specialists who gave frequent talks brought in $40,000 to $100,000 and, in a few cases, more. Dr. Lawrence DuBuske, an allergy specialist, earned the most: $219,775. The Globe reported earlier this year that he resigned from Brigham and Women’s Hospital largely because of its new speaking ban.” (Boston Globe)

Frozen Vegetables Sold at Kroger and Walmart Recalled – “PR Newswire reported that the Pictsweet Company announced a voluntary recall of certain codes of store brand products containing frozen green peas after the company learned that some of the packages may contain glass fragments, which may cause injury if ingested. Products subject to this recall were distributed only to Kroger stores in the Southeast United States and Walmart stores throughout the United States.” (

Personal Health – Three R’s for Extreme Longevity – Esther Tuttle is pushing age 100. "Her memoir and replies to (a reporter's) queries revealed three critical attributes that might be dubbed longevity’s version of the three R’s: resolution, resourcefulness and resilience. Throughout her long life, she’s taken hardships in stride, traipsed blithely over obstacles and converted many into building blocks. And she has adhered to a regimen of a careful diet, hard work, regular exercise and a very long list of community service, all while raising three children." (The New York Times)

Running a hospital: Tactical update on SEIU Paul Levy on union organizing at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center: “There has been a theory circulating around town that this tactical decision to avoid MGH and Brigham and Women's Hospital might have its origins in the personal relationship between the former head of the SEIU and the Chief Operating Officer of PHS [Partners Health System], who served as an Deputy Secretary of Labor under President Clinton. Will SEIU's reluctance to take on the PHS hospitals be put aside now that Mr. Stern has left the SEIU and the COO [Tom Glynn] is leaving Partners?” (Running A Hospital)

Key Executive At Partners HealthCare Steps Down, Heads To Harvard

Tom Glynn is stepping down as Partners COO

Tom Glynn, the longtime chief operating officer at the state’s dominant health care network, Partners HealthCare, will step down at the end of the year to teach at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, according to a letter from Partners president and CEO Gary Gottlieb. In addition to his main job as COO, Mr. Glynn, who has been with the organization since 1996, has also acted as an important strategist on political and other critical matters.

Here’s the letter from Dr. Gottlieb, announcing the departure:

Dear Colleagues,

Last year at this time when Partners HealthCare was preparing for the CEO transition, Tom Glynn, our Chief Operating Officer, shared with me his aspiration to return to his greatest passions, public service and higher education. Given the tumultuous environment we faced, I prevailed upon him to stay and help our leadership team through the organizational change ahead.

Now as we move forward with our strategic plans, and as we enter a new fiscal year, Tom has informed me that he is ready to step into the next phase of his career; he will leave his fulltime responsibilities at the end of the year, using the time until then to help with the transition. Tom will be teaching at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and serving as a Senior Fellow for Health Care Delivery Reform at the Center for American Progress in Washington, DC.

Over the last nearly fifteen years, Tom has been a remarkable leader and partner to all four Partners’ CEOs as well as the leaders of all of our member organizations. Continue reading

Hospital Execs Get Million-Dollar-Plus Pay

The Boston Globe headline reads: “Hospitals Spent to Keep Talent.”

An alternative headline might be: Top Boston hospital executives earn large salaries. Or at least, they did in 2008, before the economic crisis hit full blast. It would be interesting to read what their pay is like in these days of layoffs and cutbacks. Any volunteers?

Newly required public filings obtained by the Globe include these 2008 pay packages:

Elaine S. Ullian, now retired as Boston Medical Center’s chief executive: nearly $4.8 million, including $3.5 million in deferred compensation

James J. Mongan, former Partners chief executive: $3.6 million in total compensation.

Gary L. Gottlieb, president of the Partners-owned Brigham and Women’s Hospital: $1.6 million total package.

Peter L. Slavin, then president of Partners’ Massachusetts General Hospital: $1.4 million total.

Paul F. Levy, chief executive of Harvard-affiliated Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center: nearly $1.3 million.

Ellen M. Zane, chief executive at Tufts Medical Center: about $1.2 million.

Ralph de la Torre, chief executive of the Catholic hospital chain Caritas Christi Health Care: $1.2 million in total in 2008.