Unsurprisingly

Island Health CEO gets more in benefits than the average B.C. resident’s total income

Nearly 600 employees making $100,000 or more a year as health authority's total staff contingent nears 20,000 people

The CEO of Island Health made more in extras last year than the average British Columbian made from their entire income.

Brendan Carr, president of the 19,600-employee organization responsible for your health care took home $22,605 in benefits, $32,624 in pension contributions and $7,372 in perks — mostly vehicle related — in the fiscal year 2014-15.

That total of $62,601 eclipses the average B.C. annual income of $47,840 for the same year.

Carr — whose total compensation package equalled $412,562 — isn’t alone in that distinction. Each of Island Health’s top five earners can say the same, with those extras pushing their respective compensation packages to at least $304,090, according to numbers made available on the Island Health website.

They lead one of Vancouver Island’s largest employers, an organization with an annual budget of $2.2 billion, a little over half of that which is allotted to staff.

Island Health director of human resources Carol Fuller said senior management compensation is determined by guidelines set through the BC Public Sector Employers’ Council. Those guidelines target compensation rates at the mid-point of a blended survey of similar positions in both the public and private sector.

Fuller said Island Health does not use bonuses as incentives for non-unionized senior staff, however those not in supervisory or budget-responsible positions may be eligible for raises if they reach certain pre-determined goals set at the the start of the year. The rest remain on a salary freeze implemented in 2012.

Carr, meanwhile, gets a portion of his salary held back if he does not meet a required performance level. Total compensation packages from 2004/05 were unavailable, but in terms of salary, he made approximately $50,000 more than then-CEO Rick Roger made a decade ago.

The number of employees working for Island Health has ballooned by 23 per cent in that same decade, from 16,000 to 19,600.

“It’s the growth of the population and the health of the population,” Fuller said. “Look at the average age on the Island.”

She said Vancouver Island is not dealing against a stacked deck when it comes to competing with other B.C. health jurisdictions for staff. All health authorities are required to make offers within the same pre-set ranges and the Island is attractive in terms of quality of life.

Meanwhile, senior managers aren’t the only ones making a good living working for the health authority.

According to Island Health’s schedule of employee remuneration and expense, more than 3,700 Island Health employees made $75,000 or more in 2014/15, 591 of them pulling in six-figures or more. That compares to 763 and 131 respectively ten years earlier, a time when the average British Columbian saw his or her annual income total $37,700.

Those numbers do not include most doctors, who are not considered employees of Island Health.

Fuller said a shade over 80 per cent of Island Health employees who earned over $75,000 in 2014/15 belonged to a bargaining unit — primarily the B.C. Nurses Union and the Health Sciences Association.

Fuller didn’t think the swelling number of over-$75,000 (up 385 per cent) and $100,000 (351 per cent) employees was particularly remarkable considering it happened over the course of a decade to a group of highly skilled employees with an in-demand skill set.

“We you are talking a 10-year period and you’ve got an anchor like $75,000, a small percentage could put you over.”

 

Top 10 Island health remuneration 2014/15

Brendan Carr $347,966 (president and CEO)

Jatinder Baidwan $280,696 (chief medical officer)

Adele Harrison $274,762 (medical director, quality and patient safety)

Richard Crow $272,387 (medical director, mental health)

Catherine Mackay $272,075 (chief operating officer)

Catherine Claiter Larsen $267,854 (chief information officer)

Kim Kerrone $265,552 (chief financial officer)

Perry Kendall $242,897 (BC medical health officer)

Charmaine Enns $241,108 (medical health officer)

Richard Stanwick $240,549 (chief medical health officer)

— source Island Health, includes base salary, any retroactive pay and vacation payouts, does not include benefits, pension contributions or any perks.

 

Follow me on Twitter @JohnMcKinleyBP

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