Based on employment and earnings, healthcare has grown into the second largest sector in North Texas, according to a report released today by the Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council (DFWHC). The economic impact of the 90 DFWHC-member hospitals on the North Texas economy is $18.4 billion in labor income, a $4.4 billion increase from an identical study conducted in 2013.

The studies were commissioned by the DFWHC Board of Trustees, made up of executive officers from North Texas hospitals, and created by Dr. Gerald A. Doeksen, a regents professor at Oklahoma State University. “We were impressed by the significant increase over the past four years,” said W. Stephen Love, president/CEO of DFWHC. “Such a positive economic impact is extraordinary, especially with the current challenges facing hospitals today in healthcare reform.” Healthcare was behind only the professional, scientific and technical services sector in North Texas earnings and the retail trade in numbers of employees.

Titled “The Economic Impact of the Member Hospitals of the Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council on the State of Texas and the Dallas-Fort Worth Area,” the study showed hospital expenditures on retail sales contribute $5.7 billion, which produces $356.9 million in state sales taxes. Additionally, the study reflected over $1.4 billion in total state and local tax impacts. DFWHC-member hospitals generated 295,138 total jobs, an increase from 265,294 in 2013. “These numbers show that North Texas hospitals do much more than just provide medical services,” said Dr. Doeksen. “The employment and income generated and the ripple effect in other businesses throughout the economy are enormous. The study clearly demonstrates that member hospitals of DFWHC are major players in economic development in Texas.”

Hospital systems participating included Baylor Scott & White Health Care System, Kindred Healthcare, Hunt Memorial Hospital District, Medical City Healthcare, Methodist Health System, Texas Health Resources and Tenet Health Care System. Individual hospitals included Children’s Health, Cook Children’s, JPS Health Network, Parkland Health & Hospital System, Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, UT Southwestern University Hospitals and other hospitals throughout the region.

Using a computer program developed specifically for the healthcare industry, Dr. Doeksen analyzed not only the direct economic contribution of hospitals and other providers, but also calculated how many jobs and how much payroll plus benefits (income) were created as a secondary effect. The jobs and income generated in other businesses are measured with employment and income multipliers derived specifically for Texas, Dallas-Fort Worth and different North Texas counties. “Hospitals act as economic engines and generate huge financial impacts for the communities they serve,” Love said. “Economic developers frequently seek manufacturing and high technology industries that will create new jobs. The activities of the DFWHC-member hospitals are attracting these industries and must be recognized as a large contributor to the economy.”

Policies should be adopted to encourage the economic impact generated by hospitals to ensure continued economic growth for North Texas and the state, according to Love.

“The continuation of the Medicaid 1115 Waiver and Healthcare Reform to improve coverage, access and outcomes must be given careful consideration in Washington, D.C. and Austin so hospitals can continue this beneficial economic impact,” added Love.

DFWHC is a 90-member trade organization with 50 years of service to North Texas healthcare. Governed by a 15-member Board of Trustees made up of hospital executive officers, the hospital trade association is committed to the continuous improvement of patient care.

Presented by the Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council

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