Lutheran settles suit against ex-CEO

Local News

Lutheran Health Network and Community Health Systems has settled their lawsuit against former Lutheran Health Network CEO, Brian Bauer.

The settlement was announced in an e-mail news release Saturday afternoon from Geoffrey Thomas, public relations supervisor for LHN.

The suit alleged Bauer violated restrictions of his stock option agreement.

Under the terms of the agreement, Bauer is prohibited from disclosing any confidential, proprietary or non-public information obtained during his employment with Lutheran until June 13, 2020.  The stock option agreement and order by the Williamson County Tennessee Court enforcing that agreement remains in effect. Other terms in the settlement remain confidential. 

In June 2017, the former LHN CEO was removed from his position after a group of 10 physicians put in a bid to buy the hospital system. CHS rejected the $2.4 billion offer.

The suit claimed Bauer engaged in “unlawful conduct” after the failed bid by threatening to harm Lutheran’s business. In a “long-planning scheme,” Bauer disrupted Lutheran’s normal business, interfered with patient, customer and physician relations, and “(sowed) the seeds of unfounded fear with hospital staffs and, no doubt, patients,” the lawsuit alleges.

The suit alleged that Bauer, from October 2016 and even after his firing in June 2017, spread confidential and proprietary information about CHS’s affiliates to competitors under a pseudonym, Sajin Young. In a Facebook account created in August, “Sajin Young” shares regular updates and opinions about CHS and Lutheran, including current CEO Mike Poore.

The suit claimed Bauer did so to drive Lutheran from the Fort Wayne market to advance his own economic interests.

Bauer has since been named the leader of IU Health’s planned primary care medical office in Fort Wayne.

WANE 15 is working to contact Bauer for comment. 

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