SALT LAKE CITY — Former Lt. Gov. Greg Bell has been appointed president and CEO of the Utah Hospital Association.

"We are thrilled to welcome Greg Bell in this new leadership role representing the hospitals and health systems in the state," said David Entwistle, chairman of the association's board and CEO of the University of Utah's hospitals and clinics.

Entwistle said Bell's background in health care policy and political experience "will prove invaluable as we go forward in navigating the many changes taking place in the U.S. health care system in the coming years."

Bell announced last month he was stepping down for financial reasons. He said he needed to earn more money to meet financial obligations related to his real estate investments and prepare for his retirement.

The association declined to release Bell's salary. He earned $105,000 a year as lieutenant governor, a post he had held since being appointed by Gov. Gary Herbert in 2009.

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Jill Vicory, the association's director of member and community affairs, said "a competitive salary range" was determined by looking at CEO salaries paid in the past, as well as to leaders of similar sized hospital associations nationwide.

The governor's choice to replace Bell as lieutenant governor, former state House member Spencer Cox, was sworn in Wednesday after being confirmed by the state Senate.

Bell, who served as the chairman of the state's Executive Health Policy Group, assumes his new post on Nov. 1.

— Lisa Riley Roche


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