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Phoebe Putney Health System Generates $1.28 Billion for Local and State Economy


Albany, Ga. – In 2016, Phoebe Putney Health System (PPHS) generated more than $1.28 billion in revenue for the local and state economy, according to a recent report by the Georgia Hospital Association (GHA), the state’s largest hospital trade association. During the same period, the health system supported 8,019 full-time jobs in addition to the more than 4,300 people employed by Phoebe.

“This report shows that Phoebe continues to have an enormous positive impact on Southwest Georgia. Not only do we provide steady job growth, but we are dedicated to improving the health and wellness of the communities we serve, including ensuring residents have access to the highest quality healthcare services available,” said Joel Wernick, President/CEO of Phoebe Putney Health System.

Phoebe also had direct expenditures of more than $557 million in 2016. When combined with the economic multiplier developed by the United States Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis, the total economic impact of those expenditures was more than $1.28 billion.

This output multiplier considers the “ripple” effect of direct hospital expenditures on other sectors of the economy, such as medical supplies, durable medical equipment and pharmaceuticals. Economic multipliers are used to model the resulting impact of a change in one industry on the “circular flow” of spending within an economy as a whole.

Phoebe is a major component of the area’s economic strength; however, like the rest of the Georgia hospital community, is concerned about economic challenges that affect the hospitals’ ability to deliver timely and efficient care. A fast-growing uninsured population and inadequate payments from government insurance programs like Medicare and Medicaid have made it increasingly difficult to meet the community’s healthcare needs. In 2016, 40% of all hospitals in Georgia operated with negative total margins.

“There is no doubt that these are challenging times in healthcare, but we will remain steadfast in our commitment to providing care for those in need, regardless of a patient’s ability to pay. Every community needs access to a strong, vibrant healthcare system that will not only meet the healthcare needs of the communities it serves, but also attract other industries and businesses to the area,” added Wernick.

The PPHS hospitals included in the report are Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital, Phoebe Sumter Medical Center and Phoebe Worth Medical Center. Below is the economic impact each of the hospitals generated in 2016, according to GHA:

  • Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital, located in Albany, generated a total economic impact of more than $1.1 billion on $490 million in direct expenditures. The hospital supported 6,623 full-time jobs in the Dougherty County area and across the state.
  • Phoebe Sumter Medical Center in Americus generated a total economic impact of more than $127 million on $55 million in direct expenditures. The hospital supported 883 full-time jobs in Sumter County and across the state.
  • Phoebe Worth Medical Center in Sylvester generated a total economic impact of $13.8 million on $6 million in direct expenditures. The hospital supported 259 full-time jobs in Worth County area and across the state.

Statewide, GHA said Georgia hospitals in 2016 generated over $49 billion for the state’s economy and created more than 150,000 full time jobs.