Annual Community Investment Report

January 17, 2017

Hospitals’ community investments improve health, strengthen the economy, improve quality of life and ensure a healthy workforce. Using the Triple Aim of better health, better care and lower cost as a guide, hospitals are delivering value in communities throughout the state.

Hospitals provide both community benefit and economic impact. These contributions are support health improvement and economic value, locally and statewide.

Hospitals benefit their communities in numerous ways. For example, in 2015, Missouri hospitals delivered $2.7 billion in community benefit — including $1.2 billion in uncompensated care — to communities throughout the state.

Providing care for those without the resources to pay is an essential part of hospitals’ community-focused mission. Charity care and bad debt are combined to find the total uncompensated care provided. In 2015, Missouri’s hospitals provided approximately $641 million in charity care and incurred more than $577 million in bad debt at cost. Although uncompensated care decreased by approximately $100 million between 2014 and 2015, the rate is still above the 2013 total of $1.1 billion.

Hospitals’ community investments exceed charity care and bad debt. In 2015, hospitals’ unreimbursed cost of caring for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries exceeded $1 billion. In addition, hospitals provided nearly $13 million for medical clinical services, donated nearly $56 million to causes within their communities and spent more than $376 million on the education of health professionals.

Together, these investments are known as community benefit. When uncompensated care is added to these other community-supporting investments, hospitals provided more than $2.7 billion in value to their communities.

Hospitals have a significant impact on Missouri’s economy. They provide a significant financial boost to the communities they serve, where they often are the largest employer. In addition, hospitals must invest in their infrastructure to ensure the highest quality care and patient satisfaction. These investments underpin the economy of cities, small and large, providing support for families and businesses throughout the state.

In 2015, Missouri’s hospitals employed nearly 153,000 individuals, with an annual payroll of $9.9 billion. Hospitals also invested more than $1.8 billion in various capital improvement projects throughout the state. These community investments help strengthen the health care system. They also ripple throughout the economy, creating household income, opportunities to build businesses and revenue for state and local government.

Hospitals are committed to delivering on the Triple Aim of better health, better care and lower cost. Individually and as a community, hospitals are working to building a stronger, healthier state and workforce. Missourians who want to understand more about hospitals’ Triple Aim efforts can compare hospital prices, quality and community investment on Focus on Hospitals.