In Iowa, Hospitals Generate $6.2 Billion and 70,000 Jobs
Orange City Area Health System (OCAHS) generates over 750 jobs that add $26.7 million to the northwest Iowa economy, according to the latest study by the Iowa Hospital Association. In addition, OCAHS employees by themselves spend $6.8 million on retail sales and contribute over $400,000 in state sales tax revenue.
“While this represents significant economic contribution,” explains Marty Guthmiller, CEO of Orange City Area Health System, “it represents only the hospital component of OCAHS. Our medical clinics, nursing homes, and home health programs generate additional millions to the local economy.”
The IHA study examined the jobs, income, retail sales and sales tax produced by hospitals and the rest of the state’s health care sector. The study was compiled from hospital-submitted data on the American Hospital Association’s Annual Survey of Hospitals and with software that other industries have used to determine their economic impact.
The study found that Iowa hospitals directly employ 70,363 people and create another 65,783 jobs outside the hospital sector. As an income source, hospitals provide $3.9 billion in salaries and benefits and generate another $2.3 billion through other jobs that depend on hospitals.
In all, Iowa’s health care sector, which includes employed clinicians, long-term care services and assisted living centers, pharmacies and other medical and health services, directly and indirectly provides 333,554 Iowa jobs, or more than one-fifth of the state’s total employment.
“People are often unaware of the contributions that hospitals make to their local economies, including the number of people they employ, the significance of hospital purchases with local businesses and the impact of their employees’ spending for the entire region,” said Kirk Norris, IHA president/CEO. “Just as no one provides the services and community benefits found at our hospitals, there is also no substitute for the jobs and business hospitals provide and create.”
Guthmiller adds, “Obviously, we’re here to address health needs. But the role we play in the local economy is significant as well.”