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UMass hospital system posts $92M surplus

12/29/2009, 9:49 a.m.

       UMass hospital system posts $92M surplus

      UMass Memorial Health Care Inc., the dominant hospital system in central Massachusetts, posted a $91.6 million surplus during the recently completed fiscal year by cutting costs, deferring purchases, treating more patients and reversing investment losses.

      Hospital officials say the surplus for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30 was up 65 percent over the previous year.

      President and chief executive John O’Brien tells The Telegram and Gazette the system was able to generate a surplus despite a rough start to the year.

      O’Brien said the system boosted hospital admissions by about 2,000 from the previous year as UMass Memorial sought to capture patients and procedures that otherwise likely would have gone to Boston hospitals.

      The system runs hospitals in Worcester, Fitchburg, Leominster, Clinton, Marlborough and Palmer.

      Gov. Patrick says he may miss book deadline

      Deval Patrick may miss the deadline for completing his autobiography.    

      The Massachusetts Democrat told reporters in a year-end interview that the writing has been slower than he expected and he may not finish the book before its planned 2010 release.

      While he plans to eventually complete it, he said it was not his “top priority.”

      Patrick received a $1.35 million advance for the book in 2008. It’s initial release date would have coincided with his re-election campaign next year.

      He said his editor is “very flexible.”

      Troubled Springfield school ousts principal

      The principal of a troubled Springfield school has been fired after the state education chief recommended that its charter be revoked.

      The Republican newspaper of Springfield reports that Robert Hughes Academy Principal Janet Henry was fired after state officials said widespread cheating helped the school dramatically improve MCAS test scores.

      Henry has denied any wrongdoing in the testing procedures. She could not be reached for comment. She was placed on leave about for weeks before the board of directors ousted her.

      Board president Calvin Walls says in a letter to parents that the decision “came about after much deliberation and in consideration of the needs and concerns of all stakeholders in the school.”

      The state board of education will vote in January on a proposal to revoke the school’s charter because of mismanagement and cheating.