The nonprofit health system recently released its 2016 Community Benefit Report detailing its community benefit activities for fiscal year 2015 (October 2014 through September 2015). Across San Diego County, Scripps invested $353.6 million into community benefit programs. A copy of the report is available online at www.scripps.org/communitybenefit.
Scripps La Jolla and Scripps Green contributed $73.6 million and $43.9 million in community benefits, respectively.
Scripps cares for some of the neediest people in San Diego County, often at low to no cost. While the largest portion of its community benefit efforts in the La Jolla area went toward uncompensated care, Scripps also invested in training for new physicians, health screenings, health education, support groups, and other important community needs through Scripps La Jolla and Green hospitals.
“Our commitment to the San Diego community continues as strong as ever with thousands of employees, physicians and volunteers working together to meet our patients’ needs,” said Chris Van Gorder, Scripps president and CEO. “Scripps is proud to continue our legacy of making a vital and measurable difference in the communities that we serve.”
Scripps divides community benefit services into three categories: uncompensated health care, community health improvement services and professional education and health research.
Uncompensated care accounted for the largest portion of Scripps’ community benefit efforts throughout San Diego County, more than $316 million in fiscal 2015.
At Scripps La Jolla, uncompensated care totaled $71.4 million and included:
- $62.8 million in under-reimbursed care (underpayment from Medi-Cal, Medicare and other government programs).
- $8.3 million in charity care (for people without insurance who did not qualify for government assistance).
- More than $267,000 in bad debt (failure to pay by patients whose health care was not classified as charity care).
Scripps La Jolla also invested close to $1.6 million in professional education and health research, including a pharmacy residency program. It devoted nearly $511,000 toward community health services such as breast cancer support groups, and cardiac and stroke exercise programs. And more than $138,000 went to community building activities such as the in-lieu of funds program that helps low-income patients with post-discharge needs, including board, medications and transportation.
Also in La Jolla, the Scripps Whittier Diabetes Institute devoted nearly $245,000 to community benefit programs, including $114,000 for professional education and health research and more than $130,000 for community health services.
Scripps Health employees and affiliated physicians collectively volunteered 167 volunteer hours in support of Scripps-sponsored community benefit programs, the equivalent of nearly $8,000 in volunteer labor. (Volunteer hours are mentioned in the report but are not part of the community benefit total.)
At Scripps Green Hospital, uncompensated care for 2015 totaled $38.2 million, including:
- $36.7 million in under-reimbursed care (underpayment from Medi-Cal, Medicare and other government programs).
- $1.5 million in charity care (for people without insurance who did not qualify for government assistance).
Scripps also invested $5.4 million in professional education and health research through Scripps Green Hospital, including internal medicine training. It devoted nearly $230,000 toward community health services, such as cancer and organ transplant support groups, support for the St. Leo’s Mission Medical Clinic and St. Vincent de Paul Village Medical Clinic and community building activities such as the in-lieu of funds program.
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 2016 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.