Pennsylvania Hospitals' Community Impact

Fiscal Year 2022

Pennsylvania hospitals—vital to their communities.

Hospitals and health systems provide care, serve as economic anchors, and strive to improve their neighborhoods with innovative wellness and population health programs that benefit their communities.

In addition to providing around-the-clock care for all people, regardless of ability to pay, hospitals support their communities by:

  • Employing staff, paying above-average wages, building infrastructure, and purchasing equipment and supplies
  • Supporting other industries such as facilities, grounds, and fleet maintenance
  • Inducing additional economic activity in sectors such as real estate, financial services, and hospitality
  • Educating and training the next generation of medical professionals for Pennsylvania and across the nation
  • Attracting billions in federal research funding for health care innovation
  • Providing charity care to Pennsylvanians when they need it most
  • Addressing community health needs and, absent a public hospital system, providing critical public health infrastructure 

HAP’s analysis of fiscal year (FY) 2022 data reveals that Pennsylvania hospitals delivered a $9 billion community benefit and—both directly and through the ripple effects of their economic activity—strengthened their communities and the commonwealth by:

  • Contributing $182 billion to the state and local economies
  • Supporting more than 590,000 jobs throughout the entire commonwealth.
  • Generating $37.4 billion in wages, salaries, and benefits


Mother holding new baby

Caring for Pennsylvania

Hospitals offer around-the-clock, high-quality routine and emergency care to Pennsylvania’s residents, providing critical public health infrastructure for communities throughout the state. Hospitals and health systems continue their commitment to ensuring access to high-quality person-centered care for all patients, regardless of their ability to pay.

During fiscal year 2022, Pennsylvania hospitals had:

  • 1.4 million inpatient discharges
  • 5.5 million emergency department visits
  • 40 million outpatient visits
  • 37,888 staffed beds
  • 124,056 births

Economic Impact

During the past decade, hospitals’ economic impact has increased 76 percent in Pennsylvania.

During fiscal year 2022, hospitals and health systems supported one-fifth of the state’s entire gross domestic product and contributed $182 billion to state and local economies:

  • Jobs: Hospitals generated $37.4 billion in wages, salaries, and benefits and supported 590,186 jobs; one of every 10
  • Wages: Pennsylvania hospital jobs pay, on average, about 10 percent more than the statewide average wage for all sectors
  • Top employers: 58 of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties have at least one hospital among their top 10 employers and in 21 counties, a hospital is the largest employer.
  • Research funding: Hospitals and universities with hospital-affiliated medical schools secured nearly $1.9 billion in federal research funding 

Hospitals and health systems continued to strengthen their communities and the commonwealth even as they face a historic health care workforce emergency and significant challenges to their financial stability. During FY 2022, 39 percent of Pennsylvania’s general acute care hospitals operated in the red while another 13 percent had unsustainably narrow margins of less than 4 percent.

Hospital food service worker

Medical research worker

Community Benefit

During FY 2022, Pennsylvania hospitals and health systems delivered $9 billion in total community benefit.

  • $5.3 billion in Medicaid and Medicare program shortfalls
  • $1.2 billion to educate the next generation of health professionals
  • $796.7 million in services provided at a loss to meet community need
  • $693.8 million for health research
  • $429.5 million in community health improvement and community benefit activities and contributions
  • $397.5 million in charity care
  • $141.2 million in bad debt

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HAP Contacts

For more information or with questions, please contact HAP's Research Department. Media inquiries should be directed to Chris Daley, vice president, strategic communications.