muhlenberg county hospital 300MUHLENBERG COUNTY, Ky. (4/8/13) – Muhlenberg Community Hospital (MCH) has been part of the safety net of our community since 1938– caring for the needy and people during their most vulnerable times. But in these rocky economic times, Muhlenberg Community Hospital is often the only place many individuals can turn to for help.

MCH benefits the county every day by providing quality care to its patients in addition to other contributions given beyond basic health care services- including outside the hospital’s walls. Kentucky hospitals recently participated in the Kentucky Hospital Association (KHA) 2011 community benefit report. In 2011, the value of the community benefit programs and services provided by Kentucky hospitals was nearly $1.96 billion. Kentucky hospitals are committed to meeting the health care needs of all residents, regardless of their ability to pay for services. Community benefit programs and services do not stop at the hospital boundaries, but extend to community residents, families, schools and neighborhoods through outreach programs and other coordinated care activities that make the community a healthier place to live.

Muhlenberg Community Hospital is proud of the charity care and other benefits it contributes to the local community. In addition to being Muhlenberg County’s largest private employer, the hospital provides other essential health care services and benefits such as health screenings, immunizations, smoking cessation programs, volunteer programs, health education, professional education, and cash in- kind donations on an annual basis.

“Community benefits are one of the most powerful indicators of Kentucky hospitals’ many contributions to help strengthen their communities — they quantify the hospitals’ mission and commitment to care” said Michael T. Rust, KHA President.

In addition to their caring role, Kentucky hospitals are an important part of the state and local economies. Therefore, it is important that they be financially strong and stable. Their financial strength is closely tied to payments from Medicare and Medicaid because approximately 71 percent of patient days are covered by one of these programs — both of which continue to pay Kentucky hospitals less than the actual cost of care. In Kentucky, Medicaid only reimburses hospitals 82 percent of their actual costs and Medicare only 92 percent. Hospitals suffer a financial loss resulting from the difference between payments received from Medicaid and Medicare and the cost of care provided to beneficiaries. Adequate Medicare and Medicaid funding is essential to ensure Kentucky hospitals can meet the needs of their communities and provide high quality care to its citizens.

In 2011, Muhlenberg Community Hospital:

  • Cared for 2,038 people on an inpatient basis
  • Welcomed 170 babies into the world
  • Treated 19,319 people in its emergency department
  • Had more than 33,674 outpatient visits
  • Spent nearly $18.5 million on employee wages and salaries and local purchases on supplies and services
  • Provided over 500 jobs (including 397 full time jobs) generating more than $19 million in annual payroll and benefits comprising 4.1 percent of all wages and salaries in the county
  • Spent $2.3 million on capital projects 
  • Is responsible for generating approximately $11 million in local economic activity from the purchases they make and those made by their employees
  • Paid approximately $714,000 in provider taxes to the state to help support the Kentucky Medicaid program. With matching federal funds, MCH provider tax supports $2.4 million in state Medicaid spending.
  • Contributed $1.2 million in Kentucky income and sales taxes from their employee’s wages and salaries
  • Provided $3,514,257 in total community benefits to local residents
  • Provided more than $1,035,983 in care to patients who were unable to pay 
  • Provided more than $2,323,925 to cover unreimbursed costs of government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid
  • Supplied the community with over $154,349 in non-traditional community benefits such as community health education, health professions education, cash and in-kind donations

“This report demonstrates how Muhlenberg Community Hospital goes above and beyond its mission to deliver quality health care services locally to the community,” said John Countzler, Chief Executive Officer of MCH. Our goal is to keep Muhlenberg County residents healthier and to always meet our community’s needs, regardless of any patient’s ability to pay.”

SurfKY News
Information provided by Martha Roberts
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