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Nearly $4 million awarded to GW School of Public Health and Health Services researchers
Date:9/27/2013

ow nonprofit hospitals in the area invest in health and health care that is aimed at benefiting the entire community. Users of the tool would be able to see all investments and activities that make the hospital eligible for a tax break and at the same time improve the public health. In order to keep their tax-exempt status nonprofit hospitals must conduct an ACA-mandated community health needs assessmentan analysis that tells them the most pressing health problems in the neighborhoods surrounding the hospital. Hospitals then must develop and execute a plan that tries to come up with solutions for some of the most serious problems, like obesity, smoking or other issues that affect many residents living nearby.

"This web tool would give users a quick way to check on a hospital's health investment and activities that are reported on Schedule H to the Internal Revenue Service," says Sara Rosenbaum, JD, the Harold and Jane Hirsh Professor of Health Policy and Law at SPHHS and co-principal investigator. "In addition, the tool will allow users to easily compare how their community hospital's performance in this arena compares to other hospitals locally or nationwide."

The 18-month project will use information and a blueprint developed in an earlier project to build a prototype for a tool that would make the community benefit data collected by the IRS in Schedule H easily accessible and understandable, said Maureen Byrnes, MPA, who is also co-principal investigator of the project and a lead research scientist in the SPHHS Department of Health Policy. The team will also test the prototype and produce an updated economic analysis of the total value of tax exemptions for non-profit hospitals nationwide. Such an analysis has not been done since 2002.


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Contact: Kathy Fackelmann
kfackelmann@gwu.edu
202-994-8354
George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services
Source:Eurekalert

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