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Do Nonprofit Hospitals Give Enough?

Skip O'Rourke
The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

How much charity care is enough for a hospital to earn its nonprofit, tax-exempt status? Apparently there is no rule about that, the Tampa Bay Times reports. 

The IRS requires nonprofit hospitals to provide, in detail, the “community benefits” they provide. But the IRS doesn’t have specific targets that nonprofits have to hit when it comes to providing uncompensated care.

In Tampa Bay, the average amount of expenses that went to treatment for the poor and uninsured was 4 percent. St. Anthony’s in St. Petersburg had the largest charity care ratio in the area at 6 percent.

A health economics expert says the goal for nonprofits’ charity spending should match the rate of uninsured, which in Florida would be about 20 percent.

Originally founded in December 2006 as an independent grassroots publication dedicated to coverage of health issues in Florida, Health News Florida was acquired by WUSF Public Media in September 2012.