Colorado Hospitals Provide More Than $2 Billion to Improve Health of Colorado Communities
Cara Welch, Colorado Hospital Association
GREENWOOD VILLAGE, COLO. – Jan. 19, 2016 – In 2015, Colorado hospitals and health systems provided more than $2.2 billion in community benefits – services given by the hospital to improve the overall quality of life in a community. This includes patient care for which the hospital is not paid—otherwise known as uncompensated patient care, free or low-cost immunizations, charitable contributions, family support services, health education and community building activities.
The Colorado Hospital Association (CHA) conducted the Community Benefits Survey to learn more about the roles hospitals play outside of routine patient care. The survey collected data from fiscal year 2015 from 61 Colorado hospitals and measured hospital contributions, such as unreimbursed costs, uncompensated care and other free, discounted and unique programs that are critical to improving the health of Colorado communities.
Highlights from the survey showed that hospitals provided:
- More than $1.9 billion in unpaid costs of patient care
- More than $299 million in voluntary community benefits, including health screenings, education, free clinics and discounted services
- More than $108 million in charitable donations
“The work and services that Colorado hospitals and health systems provide in their communities extend well beyond the traditional health care setting,” said Steven J. Summer, CHA president and CEO. “Our statewide survey quantifies the voluntary activities hospitals are providing to address the unique health care conditions and needs of Coloradans. So hospitals are not only there for you 24/7, 365 days a year when you need care, but they are going the extra mile as well to be a community resource, leader and partner.”
Community benefits programs are designed to provide increased access to care and address population health inequalities for vulnerable patients. In order to be considered a community benefit, a program or service must respond to an identified community need and meet at least one of these criteria: improves access, enhances health, advanced medical or health knowledge or relieves or reduces the burden of government. By providing preventive health services and programs, Colorado hospitals and health systems are helping to reduce the need for more costly emergency treatment and acute care while also improving the health and wellbeing of entire populations.
View the infographic details Colorado hospital and health systems community benefits impact here.
About the Colorado Hospital Association
The Colorado Hospital Association (CHA) is the leading voice of Colorado’s hospital and health system community. Representing more than 100 member hospitals and health systems throughout the state, CHA serves as a trusted, credible and reliable resource on health issues, hospital data and trends for its members, media, policymakers and the general public. Through CHA, Colorado’s hospitals and health systems work together in their shared commitment to improve health and health care in Colorado.