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Boston-area hospital bosses earn up to $3 million

Chief executives for the Boston-area’s largest hospitals mostly earned pay packages between $1 million and $3 million in 2010, and several received bonuses for attracting more patients, improving care, or simply by agreeing to take the job.

Several large academic medical centers changed leaders during 2010, making it difficult to compare salaries from prior years. In at least two cases — Boston Children’s Hospital and Tufts Medical Center — hospitals awarded their top executives sizeable increases.

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Nonprofit hospitals were required to report their 2010 financial information, including executive salaries, to Attorney General Martha Coakley’s office on Wednesday.

At Partners HealthCare System, the holding company for Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General and Brigham and Women’s hospitals, chief executive Dr. Gary Gottlieb, who took the position at the start of 2010, earned $3.1 million in total compensation, including $1.5 million in salary and bonuses. Of the total, $1.5 million was for previously reported retirement benefits that became vested in 2010.

As chief executive of Brigham and Women’s the year before, Gottlieb earned about the same salary. His successor at Brigham and Women’s, Dr. Elizabeth Nabel, earned $1.6 million in total compensation in 2010.

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Mass. General chief executive Dr. Peter Slavin earned $2.5 million, including $1.2 million in previously reported retirement benefits that became vested in 2010. He earned about the same salary in 2009.

Former Tufts Medical Center head Ellen Zane earned $1.6 million in total compensation in 2010, of which about $600,000 was a bonus for meeting patient safety goals and rapidly increasing the number of patients using the hospital. That was a sizeable increase from her 2009 compensation of $1.2 million. Salary information for Eric Beyer, who took her place in 2011, was not available.

Kate Walsh, hired as chief executive of Boston Medical Center in March 2010, earned $1.3 million in her first 10 months on the job, including a $150,000 signing bonus. Former chief executive Elaine Ullian, who retired at the start of 2010, was paid $2.2 million that year, listed under “other compensation.”

At Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, chief executive Dr. Edward Benz took in $1.1 million in total compensation in 2010, including a $121,000 bonus that was based on patient safety and satisfaction, financial performance, research accomplishments, and employee engagement. He received a similar salary in 2009.

Boston Children’s Hospital paid chief Dr. James Mandell a total pay package of about $2 million, including a $725,000 bonus. That marked a 10 percent increase in his total 2009 compensation of $1.8 million.

Paul Levy, chief executive of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in 2010, was the lowest paid leader, earning $845,000 in total compensation that year, compared with $942,246 in 2009. Levy stepped down at the start of last year, with the Beth Israel board voting to award him as much as $1.6 million in severance.

At Lahey Clinic in Burlington, Dr. David Barrett, who was chief executive for most of 2010, earned $1.6 million in compensation, including a $460,000 bonus. Dr. Howard Grant, who took over in November of that year, earned $768,000.

But hospital spokesman Scott Hartman said most of that money was for relocation costs and to make up deferred compensation Grant lost by leaving his previous job. Hartman said Grant’s annual salary is about $975,000.

Liz Kowalczyk can be reached at kowalczyk@globe.com.
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