Northeast Georgia Medical Center’s three hospitals contributed more than $1.75 billion to the local and state economies in 2016, according to a recent report from the Georgia Hospital Association.
The figure includes the Gainesville, Braselton and Barrow hospitals, though the Barrow hospital was not part of NGMC for the period included in the report. It marked an increase from the estimated $1.56 billion impact for 2015 in figures released in 2017.
Other figures in the report showed that NGMC provided more than $52 million in uncompensated care and sustained more than 18,000 full-time jobs throughout the region and state in addition to the more than 8,000 employees directly employed by Northeast Georgia Health System.
The more than $52 million in uncompensated care, which includes indigent and charity care and bad debt, doesn’t take into account $6.5 million NGMC provided in community outreach such as free screenings and health education.
The report showed that NGMC had direct expenditures of more than $761 million in 2016. When combined with an economic multiplier developed by the United States Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis, the total economic impact of those expenditures was more than $1.75 billion.
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.
This report is the first that includes NGMC Braselton for a full year, since the Braselton hospital opened in April 2015.
“We at NGHS realize that while our most valuable contributions lie in the vital health care services we provide to patients in our community, our economic benefit extends far beyond patient care,” said Carol Burrell, president and CEO of NGMC’s parent organization, Northeast Georgia Health System, in a news release. “As an economic anchor in our region, we remain committed to managing our resources wisely so we may improve the health of our community in all we do for years to come.”
GHA is the state’s largest hospital trade association.
Information from NGHS press release