HELP WHERE HOSPITALS NEED IT ®
HELP WHERE HOSPITALS NEED IT ®
Community Hospital Blog
By Wilson Weber, Executive VP and COO, CHC
Rural hospitals operate as a healthcare safety net for smaller
Along with the need for hospitals and healthcare services, our rural hospitals need more primary care physicians (PCPs) to care for patients. According to data from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, there are 68 PCPs per 100,000 people in rural areas, compared with 84 per 100,000 in urban areas. Approximately 65 percent of primary care health professional shortage areas are in rural counties, according to Rural Healthy People 2020. This lopsided geographic distribution makes it doubly difficult for rural hospitals to maintain the health of their communities.
Like any business, a hospital’s financial well-being is tied to expenses and revenue. The tried-and-true formula is to increase revenue and reduce costs. That’s simple enough — yet bottom-line results for a rural hospital mean more than just the numbers. Employees, patients and the surrounding community depend on the hospital’s continued success.
In spite of the challenges, some community hospitals are seeing better financial performance. Let’s examine some actions they are taking to improve the bottom line.
Financial stability is the solution to beating the odds in rural healthcare. Find out more about how CHC is helping hospitals.
By Tony Ybarra, SVP CHC Supply Trust
Community-based hospitals are the lifeblood of smaller communities.
These facilities not only provide access to local health care, but they also stimulate the local economy, helping create jobs in the hospital and the community. However, many rural facilities face significant financial and operational challenges. They see a larger share of Medicare and Medicaid patients and operate on thin margins. For these hospitals, examining ways to reduce expenses is critical.
Supply spend is the second-largest cost for hospitals behind labor. Nearly 80 percent of providers who participated in a Modern Healthcare survey on supply chain issues said reducing medical and surgical supply costs is a formal part of their organization’s strategic plan. Holding the line on supply chain costs is a top priority.
Let’s look at three approaches to help control supply spend.
To access better tier pricing, CHC has partnered with HealthTrust to introduce a new program designed specifically for community hospitals, CHC Supply Trust. This offering helps smaller hospitals to improve their bottom line with a reduction in supply costs, estimated at 10 percent savings annually. Participants also get support with the onboarding process and optional consulting and analysis services to maximize the benefit received.
We invite you to learn more about CHC Supply Trust.
What makes a hospital a community hospital? Several criteria qualify a hospital as such, including the economic role it plays in the region it serves. As CHC’s Executive Vice President Cindy Matthews puts it, a community hospital “very much tends to be part of the economic engine of the community."
In fact, community hospitals tend to be the second or third largest employer in town, usually right behind the school district, she adds.
Lately, industry publications as well as the mainstream press have been acknowledging the vital role community hospitals play. Becker’s Hospital Review states that its importance “should not be understated — sometimes a community hospital will be the only thing keeping a town that used to thrive on railroad traffic and manufacturing going.”
Read more about the “economic boost” and other factors that make a hospital a community hospital in the Becker’s article “The modern definition of a community hospital.”
Read how community hospitals not only provide “an array of jobs from the bottom to the top of the economic ladder” but also “stimulate local spending and help attract new businesses that offer a stable of insured patients” in the New York Times article “Hospitals Provide a Pulse in Struggling Rural Towns.”
From healthcare access to employment, read how community hospitals contribute to their regions in the Southern Business Journal article “Hospitals helping bring money into the local economy.”
At CHC, we believe that community hospitals are indeed the economic engines of their region, and like any engine, they can sometimes use a tune-up. Learn more about how CHC’s services and solutions can help maximize your hospital’s performance.
CHC | 7800 N. Dallas Parkway, Suite 200, Plano, TX 75024 | 972.943.6400Copyright © 2017 Community Hospital Corporation