Sumter, SC (WLTX, AP) - Two of Tuomey Healthcare System's top leaders are leaving the company.
Tuomey leaders announced Thursday that President & CEO Jay Cox and Executive Vice President/Chief Operating Officer Gregg Martin have agreed to a separation agreement with the hospital.
Because it is a personnel matter, the specifics of the agreement are confidential.
"It has been my greatest joy to live in Sumter and work with the fine people of Tuomey Healthcare System," said Cox in a released statement. "I wish the board, the physicians, the employees and the hospital the absolute best as Tuomey moves forward in our mission to provide excellent healthcare to all the people in our community. I truly appreciate the opportunity to have served Tuomey and Sumter for the past 28 years."
Cox will stay on the company's board until November 1st, while Martin will stay with the company until the end of the year to help with the transition.
The men's replacements have not been named.
While it's unclear why the two are stepping down, the hospital has had some legal difficulty recently. Earlier this year, a federal jury found that Tuomey signed doctors to lucrative, part-time contracts to ensure that they would get referral fees associated with those physicians' procedures - an illegal kickback under Medicare law.
Prosecutors said Tuomey collected $39 million in fraudulent Medicare claims between 2005 and 2009 based on those doctors' procedures. Tuomey's lawyers argued the contracts were legal and were part of the hospital's effort to serve a medically underserved community.