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Oklahoma City's St. Anthony Hospital lays off new president, 45 others

by Paula Burkes Published: October 25, 2013

St. Anthony Hospital has laid off its president a little more than a year after announcing his appointment, The Oklahoman has learned.

Michael Beaver — who SSM Health Care Oklahoma named president on Sept. 24, 2012 — was terminated two weeks ago, spokeswoman Sandra Payne confirmed on Thursday.

Payne called the move an “executive restructuring,” saying the president positions of St. Anthony and Bone and Joint Hospital have been consolidated. Tammy Powell, who's served as Bone and Joint's president for the past year and St. Anthony chief operating officer for five years, has been named president of both facilities, Payne said.

Payne said the hospital can't provide details of its exit agreement with Beaver, but that he and 45 other, mostly administrative, employees recently laid off across Oklahoma were given a 60-day paid notice and generous severance package, she said. Beaver didn't return calls from The Oklahoman to his home for comment.

Payne said St. Louis-based SSM Health Care has terminated 586 employees, or fewer than 2 percent across its system of 30,000 workers in Missouri, Oklahoma, Illinois and Wisconsin. She said the layoffs came as a result of necessary consolidation due to “a shift of patients from the inpatient setting to the outpatient setting, reduced reimbursements from federal payers, increased bad debt and charity care, as well as the financial impacts that have come as a result of sequestration.”

In a story published Oct. 28, 2012, in The Oklahoman, Beaver, 43, said he didn't seek out his new position. For the previous six years, he'd been more than satisfied serving San Antonio-based Methodist Healthcare System as chief operating officer for three hospitals with a combined full-time staff of 4,300, he said.

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by Paula Burkes
A 1981 journalism graduate of Oklahoma State University, Paula Burkes has more than 30 years experience writing and editing award-winning material for newspapers and healthcare, educational and telecommunications institutions in Tulsa, Oklahoma...
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