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Report: Hospital has $1.1B impact on economy
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Billion-dollar impact

Here’s a look at Northeast Georgia’s impact on local and state economies, according to the Georgia Hospital Association:
2012: $1.1B
2011: $1.06B
2010: $1.03B

Northeast Georgia Medical Center is on a healthy three-year streak when it comes to impact on local and state economies.

The Gainesville hospital has surpassed the $1 billion mark from 2010-12, increasing each of the three years, according to Georgia Hospital Association data provided by the hospital.

The trade association found that, in 2012, the hospital generated $1.1 billion in revenue, increasing from $1.03 billion in 2010.

The numbers are based on direct expenses — $483 million in 2012 — combined with an “economic multiplier” developed by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis.

“This output multiplier considers the ripple effect of direct hospital expenditures on other sectors of the economy, such as medical supplies, durable medical equipment and pharmaceuticals,” according to NGMC.

Carol Burrell, president and CEO of the hospital’s parent organization, Northeast Georgia Health System, described the hospital as “a positive economic force” in the ever-growing Hall County area.

“By practicing responsible stewardship, we work to remain strong and ensure continued access to high-quality health care and the economic viability of our region for decades to come,” she said.

The report also found that NGMC provided more than $46 million in “uncompensated” care and sustained more than 8,000 full-time jobs throughout the region and state, in addition to the more than 5,000 employees directly employed by NGHS.

The more than $46 million in uncompensated care, such as indigent and charity care, doesn’t include the more than $4 million the hospital provided in community outreach, such as free screenings and health education, the hospital said.

GHA only shares statewide hospital data with the public, GHA spokesman Kevin Bloye said.

“We leave it up to our individual member hospitals to determine whether or not they want to share their economic impact data,” he said.

Georgia’s hospitals statewide pumped $40 billion into the economy,

They employed more than 126,000 full- and part-time workers and indirectly created more than 287,000 full-time jobs in Georgia.

Also, hospitals provided more than $1.6 billion in unpaid care, an increase of about $60 million from 2011.

The data are based on the Georgia Department of Community Health Hospital Financial Survey, with the 2012 numbers the latest information that is available, Bloye said.

“There is always a two-year lag on these studies,” he said.

Burrell said the local economy is also seeing impact from the construction of NGMC Braselton, the health system’s new hospital, set to open in spring 2015.

At the height of construction, NGMC Braselton had more than 250 workers on site and has spent more than $39 million with subcontractors and vendors in Northeast Georgia.

The Health System is also working to fill 600 positions at the new 100-bed hospital, officials said.

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