Magazine article Editor & Publisher

'Globe' Potential Buyer Has Been Subject of Paper's Critical Stories

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

'Globe' Potential Buyer Has Been Subject of Paper's Critical Stories

Article excerpt

Jack Connors, who is reportedly among three potential buyers of The Boston Globe, is no stranger to the newspaper. His company, Partners HealthCare, was the subject of an in-depth, three-part series in late 2008 that claimed Partners contributed to the rising cost of health care in the area.

"No company has thrived more in this sharply competitive world -- or has had more impact on the cost of medicine here -- than Partners HealthCare, a company formed in 1994 to fight back against what its founders saw as the stinginess and lopsided power of insurance companies, which had brought many hospitals to their knees," the first story in the series, published Nov. 16, 2008, stated. "By bringing together two of the most prestigious hospitals in Boston -- the Brigham and Mass. General -- Partners became what some called the '800-pound gorilla' of Massachusetts healthcare, able to bend insurers to its will."

More recently, The Globe ran a May 31, 2009 piece on Connors himself, which discussed his potential outside conflicts. That sparked a lengthy rebuttal from Partners on its Web site, which stated: "This is the fourth article in a series which has made several assertions about Partners hospitals which are not supported by facts."

Editor Martin Baron declined to comment to E&P on Connors as a potential buyer. But when asked why the paper chose to focus on his company in the series, he stated: "It is the largest, most powerful medical institution in all of New England." He said the series required just one minor correction and no major requests for changes or clarifications. …

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