- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 22, 2012

Mayor Vincent C. Gray has withdrawn his nomination of a health care consultant with ties to at least two city contractors to serve as an independent director on the board of the United Medical Center.

Officials gave no reason, nor did they announce the decision to drop Mr. Gray’s Jan. 25 nomination of Elaine Crider. Records show her name was withdrawn March 5. Pedro Ribeiro, a spokesman for Mr. Gray, said she had removed her name from consideration weeks earlier, however.

Ms. Crider’s public client list includes Unity Health Care, which contracts with the District and operates health centers across the city, as well as D.C. Chartered Health Plan, the city’s biggest Medicaid contractor. A public client list, available on the website of Ms. Crider’s consulting company, doesn’t say when she worked for either company.

D.C. Chartered is owned by Jeffrey E. Thompson, whose home and office were raided this month as part of an ongoing campaign-finance investigation by the U.S. attorney’s office in Washington. Her name has not surfaced in connection with the investigation.

D.C. Council member David A. Catania, who chairs the council’s health committee, was not disappointed that Ms. Crider’s name had been withdrawn.

“The council member expressed some concerns about the nomination and weighed in, and we’re pleased with the outcome,” said Brendan Williams-Kief, a spokesman for Mr. Catania.

Ms. Criders’ resume, sent to the council along with her nomination, refers to her as an “accomplished healthcare executive with Medicaid, behavioral health HMO and managed care expertise.” She had a long history with United Medical Center dating back a decade ago, when it was known as Greater Southeast Community Hospital.

She also had served on an independent committee appointed by city officials to review proposals for a plan to provide health services for low-income residents.

The committee chose between proposals from D.C. General Hospital, the city’s public hospital, and Greater Southeast, owned at the time by Doctors Community Healthcare Corp., an Arizona company that was a major donor to city politicians.

The committee chose Greater Southeast, which led to the shutdown of D.C. General Hospital, a move Mr. Gray sharply criticized when he took office as a newly elected Ward 7 council member in 2005.



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