Political Contributions by Healthcare Executives

By Dan Munro

First Posted at Forbes on 11/13/2012

Dan Munro, Contributing Editor – Forbes

There are countless post election charts and graphs that detail just how expensive our election was. Most estimates I saw – including this one – estimate the final tag at about $6 billion. From a healthcare perspective, Healthcare IT News released a great chart earlier today on the larger campaign contributions of about 15 healthcare execs. The study included over 200 U.S. healthcare executives for the 2011 – 2012 election cycle, but the list was also filtered by contributions of $17,000 or more.

These are truly minuscule amounts (sum total is less than $700k), compared to say the $70M that Sheldon Adelson personally donated (through various Super PAC’s) – but it’s still interesting to note the direct support and opposition to PPACA at the personal level of individual healthcare executives. It’s not the complete list of 200 – but definitely a list worth noting. Other key takeaways from the Healthcare IT News article:

  • 50.3 percent of healthcare executives’ personal contributions were donated to the Republican Party
  • 49.7 percent were donated to the Democratic Party
  • 36.8 percent donated exclusively to the Democrats
  • 24.8 percent donated exclusively to the GOP
  • The top giver to the Republicans was Prem Reddy, CEO of Calif.-based Prime Healthcare Services – a healthcare system comprising 20 acute care hospitals across California, Pennsylvania, Nevada and Texas
  • Paul Diaz, CEO of Louisville, Ky.-based Kindred Healthcare was the top donor for the Democrats. Kindred Healthcare, a Fortune 500 company with more than 78,000 employees across 46 states, is one of the largest healthcare providers in the U.S.
  • Aside from the top 15 spenders listed, other heavy hitters for the Democrats include Trevor Fetter, CEO of Tenet Healthcare Corp., and Lloyd Dean, CEO of Dignity Health.
  • Wayne Smith, CEO of Community Health Systems and Charles Martin, CEO of Vanguard Health Systems were among the top spenders for the Republicans.

 11/16/2012 Update: Healthcare IT News released a companion chart on personal campaign contributions by leaders at Healthcare IT vendors Epic, Allscripts and Athenahealth:

Patricia Salber, MD, MBA is the founder and host of The Doctor Weighs In. She is also the CEO of Health Tech Hatch, the sister site of TDWI that helps innovators tell their stories to the world. She is also a physician executive who has worked in all aspects of healthcare including practicing emergency physician, health plan executive, consultant to employers, CMS, and other organizations. She is a Board Certified Internist and Emergency Physician who loves to write about just about anything that has to do with healthcare.

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