Community Benefit Definition
Sutter Health and many other health care system around the country voluntarily subscribe to a common definition of community benefit developed by the Catholic Health Association.
What is Community Benefit?
Community benefits are programs or activities that provide treatment and/or promote health and healing as a response to community needs; they are not provided for marketing purposes.
- Generates a low or negative financial return
- Responds to needs of special populations such as persons living in poverty and other disenfranchised persons
- Supplies services or programs that would likely be discontinued – or would need to be provided by another not-for-profit or government provider – if the decision was made on a purely financial basis
- Responds to public health needs
- Involves education or research that improves overall community health
Sutter Health's Commitment to Our Communities
In 2013, our network of physician organizations, hospitals and other health care providers, invested $795 million in health care programs, services and benefits for the poor and underserved. This includes:
- The cost of providing charity care
- The unpaid costs of participating in Medi-Cal
- Investments in medical research, health education and community-based public benefit programs such as school-based clinics and prenatal care for patients.
In 2012, Sutter Health provided more than $2.9 million every week on average – or $153 million total – in free health care services for patients unable to pay.