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Community Health Investment (formerly Community Benefit)

University Hospitals’ commitment to Community Benefit traces back to our founders, who pledged that the most needy should be considered the most worthy. And since that time, we have admirably cared for our most vulnerable. In fact, University Hospitals has invested nearly $5 billion in our community since 2008 and $531 million in 2022 alone. However, we also know, considerable disparities in healthcare still exist. In a recent report published by the American Hospital Association1, it stated the annual cost of health inequities is projected to reach $1 trillion by 2040 if not addressed – that’s triple today’s $320 billion.

Responding to this great need is not only ingrained in University Hospitals’ DNA, but we know that addressing the root causes of inequities can significantly improve a community’s quality of life.

Thus, we thought differently and took action. We made it a key aspect of our strategic plan and re-engineered the way we approach community investments, going beyond our regulatory imperative as a nonprofit. This allows us to have a more meaningful impact where needs are greatest and advances our focus on health equity.

The result is what we like to call Community Benefit 2.0 or our Community Health Investment & Engagement strategy. We designed it to address the needs of those we employ, care for, insure through our Accountable Care Organization and live with in our communities. To ensure we remain focused and maximize our potential for impact, we established three priority areas: Maternal & Child Health; Well-being and Economic Opportunity.

With this framework, we aim to measure our impact by establishing tangible community health and health equity goals, monitoring our adherence and holding ourselves accountable for achievement through public reporting of results. We also plan to utilize a business planning management structure that will apply consistent decision-making criteria for new programming across our system, while also ensuring sufficient capital and leadership resources for optimization and growth of the initiatives.

Bold goals like these require a village of champions to bring to fruition, including our more than 32,000 caregivers who are dedicated to promoting health equity, as well as our community partners, volunteers and philanthropic supporters who help enable University Hospitals’ journey to be the most trusted healthcare partner in Northeast Ohio.

1 American Hospital Association, Environmental Scan 2023

Download 2022 Community Health Investment Report

Download Report