Healthcare News & Insights

The 10 Highest Paid Executives in Healthcare

Healthcare is a booming industry — which is good news for everyone but especially for the executives who guide many of today’s top healthcare companies into a direction of fierce growth. But all of their hard work doesn’t go unnoticed; in fact, the long hours, executive decision making, and top responsibilities pay off – literally – as they are some of the top-earning executives in the world.

Research from Equilar and the GMI Pay Survey reveals the highest-earning executives in the world in industries from technology to manufacturing, showing that these professionals pull in some serious earnings throughout the course of one year. But here on HealthExecNews, we’re only concerned about the executives on who have established themselves in the healthcare industry – so we’ve dug through the research and found the health executives whose yearly earnings were worth noting. Based on calculations of base salaries, cash bonuses, stocks and options, this list shows that it pays to be at the top of the industry, especially when it comes to healthcare.

Here are The 10 Highest Earning Executives in Healthcare:


10. Michael B. McCallister – Humana

Michael B. McCallisterMcCallister has a long list of credentials in his career with Humana, which started in 1974, including the management of integrated hospital operations and health systems management throughout several states and divisions within the U.S. He has held the position of CEO since 2000 and was elected Chairman in 2010.
Total 2010 compensation $6,147,917


9. Mark T. Bertolini – Aetna

Mark T. Bertolini AetnaMr. Bertolini held executive level positions for companies like NYLCare Health Plans and SelectCare Inc., and Cigna before joining Aetna, where he is now the Chairman, CEO, and President.
Total 2010 compensation: $8,776,962

8. Stephen J. Hemsley – UnitedHealth Group

stephen j. hemsleyStephen J. Hemsley joined UnitedHealth Group as its Executive Vice President in 1997 and has since risen up in the ranks to hold numerous executive-level positions, including his current title of CEO and Executive Director since 2006.
Total 2010 compensation $10,810,131


7. Angela F. Braly – WellPoint

Angela F. BralyMs. Braly has played a key role in managing legal strategy, government relations, corporate strategy, and communications since the 1990’s and has been recognized as one of the Most Influential Women in Business. She has held her current position of Chairman, CEO, and President of WellPoint, Inc since 2007.
Total 2010 compensation $13,449,840


6. Allen F. Wise – Coventry Health Care

allen wise Wise has held a number of executive and leadership positions in healthcare since the early 1990’s, for companies like Keystone Health Plan, Wise Health System, United Health Group, MetraHealth Companies, and currently holds the title of President and CEO of Coventry Health Care.
Total 2010 compensation $13,647,413

5. David M. Cordani – Cigna

David M. Cordani CignaIn addition to being a Chartered Financial Advisor and  Certified Public Accountant, Cordani has held a number of different leadership positions within CIGNA since 1999, and now holds the position of CEO, President, and Director of the Executive Committee.
Total 2010 compensation $15,121,370


4. David B. Snow Jr. – MedCo Health Solutions

David B. Snow MedCoDavid B. Snow held a number of executive-level positions in some of the best healthcare companies like AmeriChoice, Oxford Health Plans, and Empire Health Choice HMO before coming Chairman of the Board of MedCo Health Solutions in 2003.
Total 2010 compensation $16,364,236

3. Richard T. Clark – Merck Co.

Richard T. ClarkClark joined Merck back in 1972 as a quality control inspector and rose through the ranks to become Chairman of the Board in 2009. Since then, he has been pulling in big profits as the head of one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies.
Total 2010 compensation $17,910,411

2. Joel F. Gemunder – Omnicare

Joel F. Gemunder OmnicareFormer CEO and President of Omnicare, Gemunder remains on the list because he has earned serious profits as one of the leading healthcare executives in the world. Though retired from Omnicare, he remains as the Director of the Compensation Committee for UltraTech, Inc.
Total 2010 compensation $98,283,242

1. John Hammergren – McKesson

Hammergren MckessonWidely known as one of the most powerful people in healthcare, Hammergren  has been in the industry since the 1980’s and with McKesson since 1996. Since that time, he has risen in the ranks to hold his current position of Chairman, CEO and President.
Total 2010 compensation $145,266,971



Biographical Information Source: Bloomberg Businessweek

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