BEVERLY | Beverly Hospital chief executive Stephen Laverty resigned today after pressure from both doctors and nurses who expressed concern about his management.

Dr. Henry J. Ramini will serve as the interim CEO while Northeast Health System launches a national search to find a replacement.

"We accept Steve's resignation with a sense of loss but also with a deep appreciation for his accomplishments," the hospital's Board of Trustees said in a written statement.

The resignation comes after doctors and nurses took separate no-confidence votes in him in April and October. The nurses union last month accused Laverty and his staff of creating a "toxic work environment" and discouraging nurses from documenting "potentially dangerous patient care conditions." The union called on public officials to pressure Laverty to resign.

A two page statement from the hospital highlighted many of Laverty's accomplishments in the last eight years, which include doubling the nursing staff, improving technology, investing in behavioral health services and elder care services, securing grants, and improving finances.

"Under Steve's leadership, Beverly Hospital has grown into the preeminent community hospital on the North Shore and for that we are all profoundly grateful," said Nancy Palmer, chair of the Northeast Hospital Corporation Board of Trustees. "He leaves this hospital system stronger and more vibrant than when he started."

Laverty, 56, was hired in 2000 to run Northeast Health System, which also includes Addison Gilbert Hospital in Gloucester, BayRidge Hospital in Lynn, outpatient centers in Danvers and Ipswich, and behavioral health centers in Peabody and Beverly. The corporation has 4,000 employees and 600 doctors on staff.

Laverty spoke before the Beverly City Council last week, touting a recent $60 million renovation of Beverly Hospital and a new $30 million outpatient center in Danvers.

But the nurses union last month accused Laverty and his staff of creating a "toxic work environment" and discouraging nurses from documenting "potentially dangerous patient care conditions."

Last month, a former hospital executive hired by Laverty was arrested and charged with stealing paintings and other valuables from the hospital.

In 2006, the Massachusetts Nurses Association complained that Laverty had entered operating rooms unannounced to observe surgeries. An investigation by the state Department of Public Health determined Laverty did not violate patients' privacy because they had signed waivers allowing visitors to watch their operations.

In 2005, Beverly Hospital was cited by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration for exposing employees to "workplace violence in the form of aggressive and/or abusive behavior and language from patients and employees at your facility."

Laverty was paid $634,204 in 2006, according to the latest tax filings available.

Trending Video

Recommended for you