Slack tide comes to Broward Health

Broward Health will start 2019 with a political and practical slack tide, a short period that is completely unstressed.  This period occurs before the newly elected state and local political, and governmental forces are settled with their organizational transitions.  

I followed Broward Health’s activities generally since 1996 and intently since 2011.  Never during that time have I seen a time where there was a greater opportunity to affect the structure and future of the organization and its role in our Broward Community. 

The reason for my optimism comes in several parts.  First, the now six members of Broward Health’s Board of Commissioners, appear to be not only competent – but also independent from any of the county’s aging political infrastructure.  While the Board does not have significant public policy experience or even passing institutional knowledge of public entities – the core members are enthusiastic to learn and work well together.  More important, through my direct and significant conversations with the core of the Board, I can report that each one desires to serve the community in the best way they can irrespective of any external pressure.   In short, they take their oversight responsibilities on behalf of the Broward community seriously.

I continue to reference the core board, that is the four members who comprise the super-majority that voted to terminate Broward Health’s former counsel Lynn Barrett.  Simultaneous with the vote, the Governor appointed a new member who together with resigned commissioner Wellins opposed the termination.  Then the Governor appointed another member who was sworn in at the December 12th meeting.  These two newly appointed members of the Board are the new kids, and although I have not had the opportunity to visit with them yet, I believe they will fit in well and will add value to the strongest and most competent Board I can remember.

Second, it is this Board that at their December 12th meeting appointed Mr. Santorio and by extension his team, to lead the organization in effect wisely choosing stability over another period of transition for Broward Health.  Mr. Santorio leads a young team of unencumbered fearless, energetic, competent folks – almost all of them new to both the organization and to Broward.  This newness is both a strength and a weakness.  This management team will need to operate at a high and independent professional level within both an awareness and an appreciation for the community of Broward.  No small task, but I think they can do it – with our help.

From my conversations with the Board and the management team, I am convinced that there is no short-term possibility of diminishing Broward Health’s presence or footprint in Broward, in fact – just the opposite is true.  The entire strategic plan is to reinvest into the community by expanding Broward Health’s lines of service proximate to the community needs.  This strategic plan is contrary to the consistent past rumors of some well-connected political players efforts to monetize and sell off some selective district assets.

Third, with the political changing of the guard in Tallahassee coupled with the nearly completely appointed Broward Health Board (for the first time since 2015), there should be a period of much-needed stability on the Board.  But like all things political – this appointment stability is measured in months and not years.

Fourth, both the Board and senior management has come to understand compliance in the context of a modern hospital system.  Here compliance is as much about changing governmental regulation as it is about creating a foundation for the multi-faceted organizational relevance to the community, the district’s taxpayer owners, and the mission of public health.

It’s time to come back to Broward Health.  It’s time to engage in your hospital system.  Socrates once said that “it goes a long way to make a man trustworthy, to trust him.”  It’s time to trust Broward Health (but verify!).  During this slack tide – that’s what I’m going to do!

Because the slack tide does not last, my message to Broward Health for 2019 is the three do-it rules;  Do it, Do it right, Do it right now.  I’ll be paying attention!  Stay tuned.

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Ding, dong. Broward Health’s Wicked Witch is Dead – The Dan Lewis Report

Beginning just before the September 26 Board meeting, things began to change at Broward Health precipitated by the completely unfounded and unprecedented, personal attack against Commissioner Klein by corporate counsel Lynn Barrett.

Change, primarily because Chairperson Klein had the temerity to exercise his oversight responsibilities and question Corporate Counsel Barrett.

Click for the rest of the story …….)

Source: Ding, dong. Broward Health’s Wicked Witch is Dead – The Dan Lewis Report

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Broward Health – Vote for anyone but Rick Scott

How do you hold a Board, that is politically appointed by the Governor, accountable? Embarrassment without a credible threat of removal goes just so far for Board members who too often care little for their reputations.

Since 2012, I have attended most Broward Health Board meetings, and been writing articles published here and in my blogs www.BrwdHealth.com and DanLewisReport.com. My writings have tried to expose, cajole, persuade, embarrass, and inform the Broward Health Board and senior leadership to do a better job. But each time, I come back to accountability.

Of course, the obvious answer is – you can’t hold the Board accountable, but you must hold the Governor accountable. Some would argue that Rick Scott did not create the problems at Broward Health, but I would counter that he certainly could address and correct them.

Instead, Rick Scott appointed inexperienced political hacks to the Broward Health Board. Then he suspended some members of the Board. Then he opened an Inspector General and an FDLE (Florida Department of Law Enforcement) investigation into Broward Health (both continuing today after close to three years). Then he refuses to appoint a full complement of Board members in effect crippling the ability of the Board to assemble a quorum for necessary meetings. For over a year, there were only four of seven board members. Now there are five of seven Board members appointed. Insult to injury against Broward Health, one of the recent Board appointments appears to have been selected specifically to protect Broward Health’s legal counsel who is responsible for hiring law firms that coincidentally support Rick Scott. Just recently, Foley & Lardner LLP, one of these law firms has even been rumored to be pushing Governor Scott to appoint another ‘friend’ to the Board to shore up the increasingly exposed and embattled Broward Health legal counsel’s ‘protection.’ Of course, it should come as no particular surprise that Foley & Lardner’s projected fees for the 2018-2019 fiscal year from Broward Health are ‘budgeted’ at over two million dollars. That’s a lot of candidate Rick Scott support!

Regardless of your political persuasion, if you care about the health of your family, your friends or yourself – and you live north of 595 in Broward County – you simply cannot give your vote to Rick Scott. He must be held accountable for the cavalier manner in which he has politicised and monetized his gubernatorial responsibilities to Broward Health and our community. There must be consequences for his irresponsibility that has risked the health of our families and our community just for his personal and political gain.

For Senate, vote for anyone but Rick Scott. Let that be a consequence of how he has screwed up Broward Health while Governor for thousands of your friends and neighbors.

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Read the latest Broward Health Articles

Read the latest Broward Health articles on the Dan Lewis Report, or click the headlines below.  All original content about Broward Health will now be published on the Dan Lewis Report and for a time be linked on this BrwdHealth site.

THREE MINUTE COURT STATUS CONFERENCE – BROWARD HEALTH (VIDEO)

June 20, 2018.  This morning, there was a three-minute status hearing in front of the Honorable Judge Zeller on the trial of the indicted Beverly Capasso – CEO, Lynn Barrett – Corporate Counsel, Commissioner Christopher Ure, and ex-commissioners Rocky Rodriguez and Linda Robison on alleged violations of Florida’s Sunshine Laws. (See numerous past articles for more details) The hearing was continued until September because a permanent judge has not been assigned to the case and there are multiple motions pending judicial ruling. Chief Judge…

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INDICTMENTS AND BREACHES OF ETHICS ARE ENDEMIC AT BROWARD HEALTH

June 20, 2018.  In the sometimes bizarro world of Broward Health, breaches of ethics and a Civil War is brewing just below the surface.  One side is Lynn Barrett, Broward Health’s Corporate Counsel. Remarkably it appears the other side is CEO, Bev Capasso, recently emboldened by her loosely negotiated employment contract.  Broward Health’s Board of Commissioners seems to split among the two camps.  Then there was the appointment of the newest Board member, Commissioner Ray Berry.  He was impressive at his first set of public meetings…

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Grand jury witness fired by Broward Health sues claiming whistleblower retaliation

By Dan Christensen, FloridaBulldog.org 

“A former Broward Health executive secretary has filed a whistleblower suit against the hospital district, alleging she was fired after testifying before the grand jury that indicted her boss, President/Chief Executive Officer Beverly Capasso.” …

“Gov. Scott and Broward Health”

“Scott has a long and tangled relationship with Broward Health. In addition to having the exclusive power to appoint its board members, he was an investor …”

Click to read the full story at …

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May 2018 Broward Health Marathon Board Meetings – The Dan Lewis Report

5/30/18 Broward Health Marathon Board Meetings A lot is going on at Broward Health.  Some of it is good.  Some of it, not so much.  Probably the biggest news for a public oversight perspective is the Governor’s latest appointment of Ray Berry.  While the Governor still needs to appoint two more commissioners to the Board, based on the performance of Commissioner Berry in his first public meetings at Broward Health – the Governor appears to have made a good choice…

See the full story with meeting videos & agenda packet excerpts: May 2018 Broward Health Marathon Board Meetings – The Dan Lewis Report

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Taxpayers’ tab for Broward Health’s lawyers (not counting defense of indicted leaders)

By Dan Christensen, FloridaBulldog.org

…The taxpayer’s tab for Broward Health’s lawyers this year is nearly $1 million more this year than in 2017, with annual legal expenses now budgeted at more than $6.1 million.

…A request for information about Broward Health’s in-house attorneys led the district to identify  seven in-house attorneys with base annual salaries ranging from $91,500 to Barrett’s $340,000. Barrett’s four top lieutenants, with titles of senior associate general counsel, draw base salaries of $239,000, $222,000, $175,000 and $165,000.

…The salaries of those attorneys, who also stand to collect a bonus of 17.5 percent of their salary this year if a recently proposed management incentive plan is implemented, total about $1.3 million, according to Broward Health’s information. But the 2018 budget for the general counsel’s office is $2,156,966, or more than 60 percent higher, indicating that salary hikes for in-house are in the works…

Read the complete story: Taxpayers’ tab for Broward Health’s lawyers (not counting defense of indicted leaders)

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Broward Health goes dark; Gov. Scott clams up

By Dan Christensen, Florida Bulldog.org – Things are getting stranger at Broward Health. On Friday, the taxpayer subsidized public hospital system began refusing to provide requested public information. On Monday, the governor’s office declined to explain why Rick Scott hasn’t suspended indicted district leaders.

…”The decision by Broward Health to no longer answer the public’s questions comes on the heels of news earlier this year that the district was demanding thousands of dollars in administrative and legal fees before allowing public access to records about its lawyers and legal costs.” …

Read the full story: Broward Health goes dark; Gov. Scott clams up

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Broward Health Fiasco: Nurses Get Peanuts, While Bureaucrats Get Huge Bonuses

From BrowardBeat.com

BY BUDDY NEVINS

…”A hospital system hemorrhaging millions will hand out bonuses to already well-paid administrators.”

“Nurses will get crumbs off the table….while they still deal with bedpans.”

“Broward Health commissioners need to be reminded of the system’s much-heralded mission statement:”

“Provide quality healthcare to the people we serve and support the needs of all physicians and employees.”

“That’s “all physicians and employees. ‘Not just high paid administrators.'”

Read the full story on BrowardBeat here https://www.browardbeat.com/broward-health-fiasco-nurses-get-peanuts-while-bureaucrats-get-huge-bonuses/

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Broward Health looks to give fat bonuses to leadership, including two under indictment

“Broward Health is poised to give fat bonuses to its leadership, including two officials who are under indictment.”

Bev Capasso – Lynn Barrett

“With its top leadership under indictment and its top doctors openly warning that mismanagement is affecting healthcare, Broward Health is poised to award $7.2 million in bonuses to its highest executives and managers.”

See the full story here: Broward Health looks to give fat bonuses to leadership, including two under indictment

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