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Letters to the editor for February 24


Ocala, FL - February 24, 2012
Published in the Ocala Star-Banner on Friday, February 24, 2012 at 6:30 a.m.

Be wary of the suitors

Excellent editorial on Sunday (“Due diligence”) on the seven companies showing interest — or shall I say, fire sale interest by some — in Munroe Regional Medical Center.

I have done a lot of research in the past on CHS finding two settlements for Medicare fraud, a very weak highly leveraged balance sheet with some questionable accounting standards. This is still true with the addition of another investigation of fraud stemming from Tenet Health Systems passing on an offer from CHS because Tenet claims fraudulent Medicare numbers were used in making the offer — this confirmed by a CHS whistleblower.

A class-action suit by Ardent Health Services stockholders claims the stock has been manipulated, numbers massaged and inaccurate.

Universal Health Services takes the cake. There are confirmed instances by the feds of patient abuses in their hospitals, and they are not permitted to work with certain mental facilities. Rick Santorum was on their board for several years during some of the charges, an interesting back story.

Through a channel available to me, all of this information has been conveyed to Munroe’s top echelon as well as a few board members.

Clayton Ellsworth