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INDEX ARTICLES OF INTEREST REGARDING GEORGE HALVORSON
February 4, 2003
Flaherty is Hatch's next selection for HealthPartners board
Halvorson says report was unfair
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)
Author: Glenn Howatt
Staff Writer


January 31, 2003
Letters from readers
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)
January 31, 2003


January 26, 2003
HMO will fight action by Hatch
HealthPartners opposes appointments to board
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)
Author: Glenn Howatt
Staff Writer


January 17, 2003
HealthPartners' ex-CEO reaped board's favors
Secret deals contributed to $5.5 million package
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)
Author: Glenn Howatt
Staff Writer


January 16, 2003
Perks at HealthPartners
Attorney general says he found a ``culture of luxury'' at the nonprofit.
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)
Author: Glenn Howatt
Staff Writer



Audit of HealthPartners turns up extravagant spending

November 30, 2001
Health-care executives were paid more than reported -
The nonprofit companies vary in their interpretation of an IRS rule on disclosing deferred compensation.
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)/PLS format
Author: Glenn Howatt; Staff Writer


November 1, 2001
HealthPartners to allow review of denials -
Under an agreement with the state, an outside committee will scrutinize the company's mental health care rejections.
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)/PLS format
Author: Glenn Howatt; Staff Writer


October 4, 2001
Health plan facing audit by attorney general
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Glenn Howatt; Staff Writer


August 20, 1992
Group Health, MedCenters merge
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Gordon Slovut; Staff Writer

December 21, 1998
Fragile finances, big bonuses for health
care execs -
Healthy bonuses boost HMO executives'
pay despite worst operational losses in
a decade 
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Glenn Howatt; Staff Writer


September 15, 1988
HMOs again will raise rates 13, to 20, Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Gordon Slovut; Staff Writer


November 4, 1987
Admirers call Burke classic entrepreneur; critics say he's abrasive and dictatorial
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Gordon Slovut; Staff Writer


June 18, 1987
State HMO's collective loss is $4 million
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Maura Lerner; Staff Writer

April 21, 1987
Hatch criticizes insurers opposed to premium tax
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Joe Blade; Staff Writer


March 17, 1987
Group Health will help pay for baby's marrow transplant
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Gordon Slovut; Staff Writer


January 26, 1987
He's trying to stimulate new life at Group Health - Star Tribune:
Author: Maura Lerner; Staff Writer
George HalvorsonJune 22, 2007 Bio -

George Halvorson

Company: Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals
Title: CEO, chairman
Years with company: 5
Career: Senior positions, Blue Shield of Minnesota; former CEO, HealthPartners, author of widely acclaimed books on the U.S. health care system
Boards: America's Health Insurance Plans, Alliance of Community Health Plans
Education: B.A., history, political science and English, Concordia College, Moorhead, Minn.; graduate studies at the University of Minnesota; senior fellow, University of Missouri, Columbia, Mo.; M.B.A., University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minn.
Residence: Alameda
Family: Engaged, four sons


November 16, 2003 bio -
Education: Bachelor's degree, Concordia College, Moorehead, Minn.

Family: Divorced. Four sons: Jonathan, Seth, Michael and Charles.
obtained from San Francisco Chronicle Article.

1987 bio - George Halvorson
Born/Jan 28, 1947, Fargo, N.D. Family/Wife Mary. Sons Jonathan, 17, and Seth, 15. Expecting third child in April. Home/St. Paul. Career/1968-1982, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, assistant director of public relations; corporate planner; vice president and senior vice president, marketing. 1983-1986, Senior Health Plan Inc., president and chief executive officer. July, 1986, Group Health Inc., president and chief executive officer. Hobbies/Windsurfing, sailing, writing, inventing.



NOTE - Some of the indexed articles may not on the surface appear to be relevant.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  Please keep than in mind when studying this topic.  

HealthPartners Compliane Review Executive Compensation Volume 1 (exhibits 1-43) George Halvorson under investigation.
Audit of HealthPartners turns up extravagant spending


One of five volumes of the attorney general's audit report of HealthPartners. (MPR Photo/Melanie Sommer)

"Minnesota's Attorney General says an audit of the HMO HealthPartners shows the company spent millions of dollars in frivolous travel and entertainment expenses and consulting contracts. Mike Hatch also alleges the company's board has provided insufficient oversight of executive compensation. HealthPartners officials say Hatch's audit provides the company with an opportunity to improve. "
AudioAudit of HealthPartners turns up extravagant spending (story audio)

HealthPartners' spending
AudioMike Hatch on Midday (1/16/2003)

Minnesota's Attorney General says an audit of the HMO HealthPartners shows the company spent millions of dollars in frivolous travel and entertainment expenses and consulting contracts. Mike Hatch also alleges the company's board has provided insufficient oversight of executive compensation. HealthPartners officials say Hatch's audit provides the company with an opportunity to improve.


February 4, 2003
Flaherty is Hatch's next selection for HealthPartners board
Halvorson says report was unfair
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)
Author: Glenn Howatt
Staff Writer

`This wasn't a board where senior management went on parade every few months with a padded agenda,'' Halvorson said. ``It is not a board that sat and listened to a parade of speakers.''

However, Hatch pointed to documents, filed with the federal government, that showed that board members spent 36 hours a year on board business in 2000, while the board chairman spent 72 hours a year.

``This a multibillion-dollar company, and those board members ought to be putting in more time,'' Hatch said.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/february42003.html



January 31, 2003
Letters from readers
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)
January 31, 2003
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/letterstoeditor.html




January 26, 2003
HMO will fight action by Hatch
HealthPartners opposes appointments to board
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)
Author: Glenn Howatt
Staff Writer

HealthPartners said it would fight any attempt by Minnesota Attorney General Mike Hatch to install new members on its board, including Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor.

The 15-member board of the health care system met in emergency session Saturday and voted unanimously to oppose any court action initiated by Hatch that would place Taylor or others on the board.

``If he takes legal action against HealthPartners or the board, then we would respond in a legal fashion,'' said board Chairman Alan Fletcher.

....... He particularly criticized former CEO George Halvorson's trips to Argentina, Australia, Chile and other countries, as well as board retreats and meetings that were held at resorts in Arizona, California and New Mexico.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/january262003.html



January 17, 2003
HealthPartners' ex-CEO reaped board's favors
Secret deals contributed to $5.5 million package
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)
Author: Glenn Howatt

HealthPartners board members knew it wouldn't look good if they gave Chief Executive George Halvorson a new fringe benefit in 1998, especially because the company was losing money.

But after receiving assurances that the supplemental retirement plan wouldn't have to be reported to the public, the board approved it, even rejecting a suggestion that awards into the plan be tied to company performance, according to documents reviewed by the Minnesota attorney general's office.

It was one of several compensation enhancements and secret arrangements that gave Halvorson $5.5 million in pay and benefits when he left the company last April, according to the investigative report.

In a review of company documents and board minutes, the attorney general's office found evidence that requests to increase Halvorson's compensation were sometimes questioned by the board but were rarely rejected.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/january172003.html



January 16, 2003
Perks at HealthPartners
Attorney general says he found a ``culture of luxury'' at the nonprofit.
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)
Author: Glenn Howatt Staff Writer

HealthPartners executives took trips to six continents, ate lavish meals, gave gifts of Waterford crystal and paid for a political fundraiser using company funds, according to a state investigation.

Despite the dubious business purpose of many expenses, controls at Minnesota's third-largest health insurer failed to prevent spending on unnecessary trips, gifts, dinners and entertainment, according to Minnesota Attorney General Mike Hatch, whose office released the investigative findings Wednesday.

Hatch said HealthPartners had a corporate culture similar to the one he found during his 2001 investigation of Medica and Allina Health System.

He said all three nonprofits made it too easy to spend money on executive perks and niceties, creating a ``culture of luxury.''

Hatch said that ``culture'' was inconsistent with the nonprofits' core mission of serving the public. Allina and Medica spent more than HealthPartners on such things, he said.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/january162003.html



August 20, 1992
Group Health, MedCenters merge
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Gordon Slovut; Staff Writer

Group Health and MedCenters Health Plan, two of Minnesota's largest health maintenance organizations, announced Wednesday that they have merged - but there's a potential hitch.

"We're still reviewing it [the proposal] for possible antitrust ramifications," said Susan Gretz, a special assistant in the antitrust division of the Minnesota attorney general's office.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/august201992.html
November 30, 2001
Health-care executives were paid more than reported -
The nonprofit companies vary in their interpretation of an IRS rule on disclosing deferred compensation.
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)/PLS format
Author: Glenn Howatt; Staff Writer

In a time of rising health care costs, top executives at some nonprofit health-care companies in Minnesota have been getting paid more than previously disclosed.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota told the Star Tribune this week that former Chief Executive Andy Czajkowski received an additional $334,000 in 1999, driving his compensation up to $1.1 million from the $772,862 that Blue Cross had reported last year.

HealthPartners, the state's third largest health plan, acknowledged that it did not include some unspecified long-term pay on its 2000 public filing, but said it will modify its statements next year to include all compensation.

And Allina Health System, the network of hospitals and clinics that formerly owned Medica health plan, said it changed its reporting last year after auditors from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) discovered that some deferred compensation was not being disclosed.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/november302001.html


November 1, 2001
HealthPartners to allow review of denials -
Under an agreement with the state, an outside committee will scrutinize the company's mental health care rejections.
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis, MN)/PLS format
Author: Glenn Howatt; Staff Writer

HealthPartners said Wednesday that it will allow an outside panel to review all its denials of mental health care, under an agreement it reached with Minnesota Attorney General Mike Hatch.

Reade more:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/november12001.html



October 4, 2001
Health plan facing audit by attorney general
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Glenn Howatt; Staff Writer

HealthPartners said Wednesday that it is the subject of the latest health plan investigation launched by Minnesota Attorney General Mike Hatch.

Last week, Hatch released the results of his year-long examination of Allina Health System and Medica. That investigation uncovered spending on consultants, executive perks, travel and gifts that Hatch contended were inconsistent with the mission of nonprofits.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/october42001.html



December 21, 1998
Fragile finances, big bonuses for health care execs -
Healthy bonuses boost HMO executives' pay despite worst operational losses in a decade // Compensation awarded to HMO executives in 1997 was affected by the worst operational losses of the 1990s. Still, some came out ahead as they met companywide strategic goals.
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Glenn Howatt; Staff Writer

# Halvorson's total compensation includes $103,782 for a life insurance and comprehensive disability insurance policy, Without that and other benefits, Halvorson's 1997 compensation was $513,816, a 9 percent increase from a comprable 1996 figures.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/december211998.html



September 15, 1988
HMOs again will raise rates 13, to 20, Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Gordon Slovut; Staff Writer

For the second straight year, Minnesota's health maintenance organizations are increasing their rates 13 to 20 percent and more, and the end of major rate increases isn't in sight.

"I think we'll have double-digit increases at least next year, too," said George Halvorson, president of Group Health Inc., the only major HMO in the state that did not lose money last year.

The first indication of the size of 1989 rate increases came this week when state employees began receiving a list of premiums for single and family coverage that will be effective Jan. 1. About 50,000 state workers are affected.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/september151888.html




November 4, 1987
Admirers call Burke classic entrepreneur; critics say he's abrasive and dictatorial
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Gordon Slovut; Staff Writer

A critic says most doctors consider Burke, who is selling control of the Minnesota-based company to a New York corporation, as arrogant, abrasive, unfeeling and dictatorial.

And one of the Burke's competitors, George Halvorson, president of Group Health Inc., said it appears to him that Burke has decided to take his money and fade from the Minnesota health-care scene.

Burke, 43, said his backers and critics have it all wrong, at least about his future. He is not going to fade away, and he didn't really need the money from the stock sale, he said.

"I am staying as chairman of the board, and that role in our company is a significant one," he said.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/november41987.html





June 18, 1987
State HMO's collective loss is $4 million
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Maura Lerner; Staff Writer

Group Health, with about 206,000 members, had the biggest surplus among the state's HMOs last year, almost $1.6 million after expenses. But that was a 45 percent drop from the year before.

"I think there will be a definite easing up this year," said George Halvorson, Group Health's president and chief executive officer. He predicted that rates would increase sharply for some prepaid health plans in Minnesota. "I think the buyers can expect to see the 2 to 4 percent rate increase turn into 8 to 15 percent rate increases," he said. He said Group Health's increase probably would be "less than the marketplace.

Read more - http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/june181987.html




April 21, 1987
Hatch criticizes insurers opposed to premium tax
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Joe Blade; Staff Writer

..........Hatch also criticized Group Health Inc. for a March 31 letter to its senior-citizen members. It said the tax would cost them the equivalent of more than five months' additional premiums. Hatch said a 2 percent tax couldn't create that increase. George Halvorson, president of Group Health, said the total increase would indeed come to that much if the tax applied to Medicare payments to the company. But since the letter was written, an amendment has been offered to exclude those payments from the computation, so the statement would no longer be correct, he said.
Read more at:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/april211987.html




March 17, 1987
Group Health will help pay for baby's marrow transplant
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
Author: Gordon Slovut; Staff Writer

Officials of Group Health Inc. have changed their minds and agreed to pay $100,000 toward a bone marrow transplant for 14-month-old Jeremy Carle of Elk River, Minn. They denied coverage earlier this year on the ground that bone marrow transplants for neuroblastoma, a rare and usually lethal form of cancer, are experimental..........

George Halvorson, Group Health president, said the reversal doesn't set a precedent on coverage for experimental treatments because the health maintenance organization is merely letting the Carles decide how the money should be spent. He said that Group Health was willing all along to pay $100,000 for the treatment of Jeremy's cancer, but that its policy against paying for "experimental procedures" caused difficulties with the Carles.

Halvorson said the money would have been used for conventional treatment of neuroblastoma, which consists of chemotherapy, radiation and surgical removal of the tumor that doctors believe is very close to one of Jeremy's kidneys. Conventional anticancer treatment for neuroblastoma stops short of destroying all of the patient's bone marrow, leaving open the possibility that some cancer cells remain hidden in it.
Please read:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/march171987.html






January 26, 1987
He's trying to stimulate new life at Group Health
Star Tribune: Newspaper of the Twin Cities
January 26, 1987
Author: Maura Lerner; Staff Writer

George Halvorson was duck hunting on the shores of Blueberry Lake in northwestern Minnesota when he realized he had a problem. His quarry had fallen on the water, and without a boat or a dog, he had no way to bring it in.

All he could do was wait for the bird to drift ashore. So he sat down and started sketching. Before long, he had designed a new invention - a duck retriever that works like a fishing pole - which he later patented.

Halvorson, it seems, has a knack for finding inventive solutions. And colleagues say it's a knack he's carried over in his professional life as one of the rising stars of the Twin Cities health care industry - and now president and chief executive officerSt. Paul-Ramsey Medical Center of Group Health, Inc., a Twin Cities-based health maintenance organization.

At 39, Halvorson has spent 18 years in the business charting new ground. He was one of the first to design an HMO for Minnesota's poor, through St. Paul-Ramsey Medical Center. He also helped create an HMO for injured workers (as an alternative to ordinary worker's compensation insurance). And he fought the federal bureaucracy to try to establish one of the first HMOs exclusively for the elderly.
READ MORE AT:  http://writetogeorgehalvorson.kaiserpapers.org/jan261987.html