Steward Health Care’s Investments at Norwood Hospital Improve Quality of Care and Create Positive Economic Impact on Community
Newly released economic impact report highlights $11.6 million in community benefits, $4.9 million in capital improvements, and $2 million in tax revenues
NORWOOD, MA, January 27 2014 — Norwood Hospital, a part of the Steward Health Care System LLC (Steward), today released an economic impact report for 2010-2012, produced by the Health Business Group, an independent consulting firm in Boston. The report reveals that Steward invested $4.9 million in construction and technology improvements at Norwood Hospital, provided $11.6 million in community benefits and delivered $2 million in tax revenues to the Town of Norwood.
“Steward acquired community hospitals facing significant financial headwinds,” explained David Williams, president of Health Business Group. “Our analysis shows that significant investments made by Steward had a positive economic impact on the surrounding communities. Meanwhile, quality of care measures have improved.”
The $4.9 million capital investment at Norwood Hospital includes new catheterization laboratories, design improvements to patient rooms, and a Robotic Interactive Operative Orthopedic System that allows patients to receive state-of-the-art care in a community hospital close to where they live. Typically, such cutting edge treatments are not available in community hospitals, causing patients to have to travel longer distances to access such treatments. For example, the 7,675 square foot catheterization facility allowed the hospital to increase the number of patients it can treat and the complexity of the procedures, including emergency coronary angioplasties and the implantation of pacemakers and defibrillators. The Robotic Interactive Operative Orthopedic System offers a new alternative to traditional hip and knee replacements for patients suffering from osteoarthritis. The innovative MAKOplasty procedure has been tremendously successful in helping patients return more quickly to their active lives.
In addition to construction and capital improvements, the hospital provided $11.6 million in community benefit investments, which included several programs aimed at promoting access to healthy foods and fitness, as well as helping to reduce obesity in the surrounding communities. These programs included adolescent nutrition and exercise lectures, a diabetes support group, lectures on cardiovascular disease and stroke symptoms, and other screening programs. This figure also included unreimbursed Medicaid costs.
In 2011 and 2012, the hospital contributed $2 million in local property taxes, making it the third largest contributor of property taxes in Norwood. It is also one of the largest employers in Norwood, which generates additional economic benefits to the community. Steward pays more than typical employers in Massachusetts (the median full-time Steward job pays $47,071 in wages compared with $43,420 for Massachusetts as a whole). Steward pays all of its employees a “living wage” of $11.50 per hour, which is $3.50 more than the Massachusetts minimum.
As a system, Steward has committed $600 million in new capital that directly and indirectly supported approximately 33,000 jobs, generated nearly $35 million in local real estate taxes and was responsible for $8.4 billion of economic impact in 2011 and 2012. In addition to direct impacts, Steward creates secondary benefits as employee and supplier spending ripples through the economy to local businesses such as grocery stores, auto dealers, dry cleaners and others.
“We are proud of the progress we have made and we will continue to make investments at Norwood Hospital to meet the needs of our patients,” explained Norwood Hospital president Emily Holliman.
Steward’s integrated community care model closely coordinates patient care among primary care physicians, specialists and other related healthcare providers in the system. Steward’s network includes over 3,000 physicians, 11 acute care hospitals, home care, an imaging operation, and a number of other post acute services. Patients are able to see their primary care doctors close to where they live and they are referred to specialists within the Steward system when needed. For patients, this means that their medical records are shared, their doctors are talking to each other, unnecessary duplication of tests can be avoided, and all levels of care are seamlessly integrated to meet personal needs.
In 2013, all Steward acute care hospitals earned an “A” grade from The Leapfrog Group, a quality and safety rating that shows how well hospitals protect patients from accidents, errors, injuries and infections. As the report notes, “quality is a significant contributor to economic impact because patients who receive high-quality care are able to live healthier, more productive lives and contribute to the economic performance of their employers and families.”
This economic impact report was submitted to the Office of the Attorney General of Massachusetts, which has oversight authority of the Steward Health Care System.
About Norwood Hospital
Norwood Hospital is a full-service, 263-bed community hospital for adults and children with a focus on delivering world-class health care along with the latest advances in technology and treatment options. Norwood Hospital is part of the Steward Health Care System LLC, the largest integrated community care organization in New England which combines over 3,000 physicians, 11 acute care hospitals, managed care, insurance programs, home care, an imaging operation, and a number of other post acute services, to provide the most cost effective and highest quality of integrated patient care. Additional information is available at www.steward.org and http://www.norwood-hospital.org.