The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

June 4, 2014

Report: Hospitals healthy for local economy

JOHNSTOWN — The area’s hospitals injected a healthy dose of economic aid into the economy in 2012, a Harrisburg-based statewide hospital group said Wednesday.

The Conemaugh Health System alone, with its hospitals in Johnstown, Hastings and Meyersdale, contributed more than $938 million into the region’s economy, a figure that includes employee salaries and other data, Conemaugh CEO Scott Becker said.

“There is no doubt the Conemaugh Health System plays a major role in the economic and social well-being of our community,” he said, calling Conemaugh “a safety net for our most vulnerable citizens.”

Nonprofit and investor-owned hospitals across Pennsylvania contributed nearly $104 billion into state and local economies, according to The Hospital & Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania. The statewide hospital advocacy group has been collecting the economic impact information since 2004, Vice-President of Research Martin Ciccocioppo said.

Windber Medical Center contributed $79 million into the area economy in 2012, according to the same data, hospital spokeswoman Amy Jeffords said.

Its total included $2.4 million in community benefit, she added.

“We’re a true community-based hospital. Our mission is to ensure people in the community can acess high-quality care and services right in their backyard,” Jeffords said.

She said the area can expect to see more invested into the community in the coming year, as plans for community speakers and health screenings are in the works.

Conemaugh’s community benefit for 2012 was listed at $8.9 million. The health system employs more than 4,500 people in the area, its website shows.

Windber Medical Center employs 471 people, Jeffords said.

Cicciocioppo said employment and salary numbers were one of several indicators the The Hospital & Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania used to formulate its totals. It used a multiplier equation adopted by the state Department of Economic Analysis to determine the “ripple effect” those employees have on their area’s economy, noting the workers shop and dine locally and rely on area services for their needs.

They also look at IRS tax forms that not-for-profit hospitals file annually and cost reports provided to the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Cicciocioppo said.

David Hurst is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/tddavidhurst

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
Poll

Do you think pet obituaries should be included with death notices?

Yes, my pet is considered a member of the family.
No, pet obituaries are inappropriate.
Pet obituaries should be placed on a different page in the newspaper.
     View Results
House Ads