Scripps Health invested $355 million into community benefit programs that served some of the neediest populations in San Diego County during fiscal year 2013, according to a recently-released report. Community benefit programs accounted for nearly 15 percent of the system’s operating expenses.
While the largest portion of its community benefit efforts went toward uncompensated care ($301 million), Scripps also invested in training for new physicians, health screenings for underserved populations, wellness services for seniors, care for homeless people and other important community needs.
“Scripps is proud to continue its legacy of making a vital and measurable difference in our community,” said Chris Van Gorder, president and CEO of Scripps Health. “We commend our physicians, employees and volunteers for going well beyond the call of duty in providing charity care, educational programs, health screenings and other much-needed services.”
Scripps collaborates with other health systems, community groups and government agencies as well as business and grassroots organizations to serve the greatest patient population needs and prioritize investments in the health and well-being of the community. The nonprofit health system recently released its 2014 Community Benefit Report detailing its community benefit activities for fiscal year 2013 (October 2012 through September 2013). A copy of the report is available online at scripps.org/communitybenefit.
Uncompensated care for 2013 included $239 million in under-reimbursed care (underpayment from Medi-Cal, Medicare and other government programs), $48.6 million in charity care (for people without insurance who did not qualify for government assistance) and $13.5 million in bad debt (failure to pay by patients whose health care was not classified as charity care).
Scripps cares for some of the neediest people in San Diego County, often at low to no cost. In 2013, Scripps provided hospital services to one-quarter of the county’s uninsured patient population. Scripps Mercy Hospital campuses in San Diego and Chula Vista accounted for more than two-thirds of the $48.6 million Scripps Health devoted to charity care.
Scripps also invested $37.6 million in professional education and health research. This included $15.3 million for graduate medical education programs at Scripps Green Hospital and the Scripps Mercy Family Medicine Residency Program; and more than $17 million for health research, primarily at Scripps Clinical Research Services, Scripps Whittier Diabetes Institute, Scripps Genomic Medicine and Scripps Translational Science Institute.
Scripps devoted more than $16 million into community health services, including community building activities and prevention and wellness programs such as cardiac screenings, diabetes education and cancer-support groups, as well as health and wellness events.
Scripps Health employees and affiliated physicians collectively volunteered 10,803 hours in support of Scripps-sponsored community benefit programs, the equivalent of $474,989.98 in volunteer labor.
The 2014 Community Benefit Report is the system’s annual response to Senate Bill 697, a 1994 state law that requires private, nonprofit hospitals to document the full range of community benefits they provide on a yearly basis. Scripps takes this legislative requirement a step further by incorporating community benefit activities from throughout the system, including Scripps’ five acute-care hospital campuses, home health services, wellness centers and clinics.
Learn more about Scripps Health, a nonprofit integrated health system in San Diego, Calif.