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Mercy Hospital Springfield in 2017 reported $681 million in payroll and benefits, according to Missouri Hospital Association data.
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Mercy Hospital Springfield in 2017 reported $681 million in payroll and benefits, according to Missouri Hospital Association data.

MSU professor’s report sheds light on Missouri hospitals

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Missouri State University economics professor David Mitchell conducted research that paints a picture of the economic impact of the state’s hospitals.

Released yesterday, the report from the Missouri Hospital Association examined 143 Show-Me State hospitals and found they accounted for roughly $27 billion, or 10%, of the gross state product, $19.3 billion in labor income, wages and benefits, and the direct and indirect support of nearly 310,000 jobs in 2017, according to a news release.

“The importance of hospitals to a person’s and a community’s health is self-evident,” said Mitchell, who’s also director of MSU’s Bureau of Economic Research and Center for Economic Education, in the release. “What this report demonstrates is just how essential hospitals are to the economic health of the state, counties and local communities.

“Furthermore, with advances in medical technology curing more diseases and conditions, Missouri’s changing demographic patterns and other matters on the horizon, this economic impact on the state and local community from hospitals is only going to grow in size over time.”

In the study’s Ozark region, which includes Springfield, hospitals directly or indirectly supported 35,658 jobs in 2017, representing about 11.5% of the total 309,203 jobs supported statewide. The Springfield-area hospitals contributed labor income of $9.8 billion in 2017, which equates to nearly 10% of the $19.3 billion statewide total in the report.

Missouri Hospital Association spokesman David Dillon said specific data on local hospitals is not available in the report. However, he pointed to the MHA’s 2017 Focus on Hospitals report, through which hospitals voluntarily provide financial information. He said the Focus on Hospitals data “isn’t an exact match, but it should be very close” to representing Springfield-area hospitals’ economic impact toward the state total in the report by MSU’s Mitchell.

At CoxHealth in Springfield, payroll and benefits were $407 million, net revenue was $1 billion and net income was $78.6 million in 2017, according to Focus on Hospitals. Mercy Hospital Springfield reported $681 million in payroll and benefits, net revenue of $1.3 billion and net income of $42.8 million in 2017, according to the MHA data.

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