Charles W. Neumann comes to St. Joseph via FTI Consultants, a firm that specializes in identifying crisis managers for hospitals. Neumann has served as an interim leader of at least two other embattled facilities, in Savannah, Ga., and Youngstown, Ohio, since 2008.
"We realize [Neumann] has a proven track record of turning around hospitals in transition," said Vivienne Stearns-Elliott, a spokeswoman for the hospital. "He also has more than 30 years of health care management experience."
Hospital officials noted that Neumann spent five years as an executive at Bon Secours Health System Inc. and knows the Baltimore area.
Hospital officials have not said why Norman left, and neither Norman, Neumann or any other executive was made available for comment. They did not characterize Neumann as a crisis manager and said he was not a temporary employee.
According to biographical information provided by the hospital, Neumann earned a bachelor's degree at Western Michigan University and received his master's degree in public health administration from the University of Michigan.
Officials at Bon Secours and other hospitals that employed Neumann did not respond to calls seeking comment or declined to comment.
At St. Joseph, Neumann will take the helm during a continuing controversy and possible unease among staff and patients.
The hospital underwent a federal inquiry into the stent procedures, and many of the patients involved are suing the hospital. St. Joseph paid the federal government $22 million to settle separate allegations of a kickback scheme involving a cardiology practice where Midei once worked and to repay Medicare funds received for stents he implanted.
Norman had characterized the scandal in past interviews with The Baltimore Sun as costly for the hospital because cardiology was a core service. Soon after Midei's departure, the hospital saw a 10 percent drop in admissions for cardiac care and a 30 percent drop in outpatient cardiac procedures, which included stent placements, Norman said.
He said patients and cardiologists might have had a "tentativeness" about care at St. Joseph.
In Maryland and across the country, officials continue to investigate the necessity of stents. A recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that up to 15 percent of the stents placed in patients were unnecessary or questionable. Nearly all of them were among those placed voluntarily to improve blood flow to the heart, rather than during a heart attack or other cardiac event.
In a written statement, Neumann said: "I know St. Joseph Medical Center and I admire its mission, its outstanding physicians and its commitment to the community for quality care and outstanding clinical programs. Health care in the United States is in transition, and I look forward to developing and implementing strategies and operational improvements that assist St. Joseph Medical Center in achieving its full potential."
Edward J. Gilliss, chairman of St. Joseph's board of directors, said in a statement that Neumann has a "passion for quality."
"The transition in leadership will be seamless," Gilliss said. "The board thanks Jeff Norman for his good work and service to St. Joseph Medical Center. Over the past two years, we've built a strong base for Chuck to lead our medical staff, employees and board forward with a keen focus on delivering quality services to our patients."
Towson-based St. Joseph is one of 73 hospitals that are members of Catholic Health Initiatives, a faith-based health organization based in Englewood, Colo., and operating in 19 states. With $9 billion in annual revenues, it is the nation's third-largest Catholic health system. Hospital officials said Friday that St. Joseph plans to remain part of this system.