Newswise — CLEVELAND – In its newly released Community Benefit Report, University Hospitals illustrates recent examples of its continued effort to address health and economic disparities in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio.

During the past decade, UH has invested more than $2.9 billion in community benefit expenditures. And in 2018 alone, the health system’s community benefit expenditures totaled $383 million.

UH works with its community to identify and address the regions’ most pressing health-related needs.  It follows Internal Revenue Service guidelines to determine allowable community benefit contribution.  UH’s total community benefit spending includes: Charity care ($47 million); community health improvement services, programs and support ($24 million); Medicaid shortfall ($193 million); research ($37 million); and education and training ($82 million).

Medicaid shortfall refers to subsidized care to Medicaid patients because this government program pays well below the cost of providing such care. While thousands of more under-resourced residents qualified for Ohio’s expanded Medicaid coverage, the state-federal health-insurance program reimbursed providers for only a portion of the care they provide.  UH underwrote the remainder of these patients’ bills.

“We make this commitment because we know that a healthier population is key to regional prosperity and because it’s our mission as a community benefit organization,” said Thomas F. Zenty III, CEO of UH. “We continue to make it easier for all people across the socioeconomic spectrum to access health care services, health information and community programs, whether they live in Cleveland or surrounding communities.  For more than 153 years, UH has proudly advanced our community while furthering our mission:  To Heal. To Teach. To Discover.”

These are just some of the areas highlighted in UH’s 2018 Community Benefit Report:

  • 2018 Cuyahoga County Community Health Assessment

Last year, UH, with the Cleveland Department of Public Health, Cuyahoga County Board of Health, Health Improvement Partnership-Cuyahoga, The Center for Health Affairs and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, embarked on a first-of-its kind joint community health needs assessment in the region. UH medical centers in Cuyahoga County are specifically addressing the following issues as a part of their Community Health Implementation Strategy: Infant & Child Health; Behavioral Health & Substance Use Disorder; Access; Education & Awareness, and Food Insecurity.

  •  Creating Strong Mothers Through Mom Power

Mom Power at UH Rainbow Center for Women & Children is a 10-week group program that offers mental health and parenting support to mothers who struggle with parenting stress and may also suffer from depression, anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder.

  •  Serving Our Youngest Patients: Infant & Child Wellness

Social, environmental and economic factors are the most significant determinants of health. For example, unsafe housing affects child health in our community by contributing to lead poisoning and worsening asthma and allergies. Lack of access to care – either as a result of transportation issues or lack of available providers – impacts pediatric chronic disease, and further isolates families without strong support systems. UH’s solutions: UH Rainbow Center for Women & Children, in Cleveland’s MidTown neighborhood, is dedicated to addressing patients’ medical and non-medical health needs with wrap-around services. UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital advances health care initiatives impacting the morbidity and mortality of infants and children, including participation in First Year Cleveland and the Lead Safe Cleveland Coalition.

  •  A Hopeful Prognosis: Behavioral Health and Substance Use Disorders

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, nearly one in five U.S. adults has a mental illness. Mental health problems are often associated with risky behavior, which in turn is linked with disease, injury and death. And, by itself, mental illness is associated with a higher incidence of chronic physical conditions. Psychiatry and behavioral health services, which are considerably subsidized, are offered at many UH locations. Additionally, telepsychiatry expands access to pediatric and adult patients presenting to UH Emergency

Departments, decreasing unnecessary admissions by 40 percent. Substance use disorder with psychiatric conditions are seen in 80 percent of the telepsychiatry patients. In response to the opiate crisis, UH collaborates with hospitals in the Northeast Ohio Hospital Opioid Consortium to collectively provide solutions. UH continues its efforts to reduce opioid use through the UH Pain Management Institute and the Medication-Assisted Treatment Program.

UH has partnered with the Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board of Cuyahoga County to train physicians and nurses as acupuncture detoxification specialists.

  •  UH Offers Fresh Food and Creative Cooking in Former Food Desert

When UH committed to build the new UH Rainbow Center for Women & Children, in MidTown Cleveland, it worked with Dave’s Market to establish a location in the same area, ensuring that local families will have the food resources to live healthier lifestyles. UH works with Dave’s to provide both demonstration-style and hands-on cooking classes to show people how to apply the advice they receive from their health practitioners. Senior centers and community groups are also requesting use of this busy teaching kitchen and community room.

The complete 2018 Community Benefit report can be found at:


  About University Hospitals / Cleveland, Ohio

Founded in 1866, University Hospitals serves the needs of patients through an integrated network of 18 hospitals, more than 50 health centers and outpatient facilities, and 200 physician offices in 16 counties throughout northern Ohio. The system’s flagship academic medical center, University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, located in Cleveland’s University Circle, is affiliated with Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. The main campus also includes University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital, ranked among the top children’s hospitals in the nation; University Hospitals MacDonald Women's Hospital, Ohio's only hospital for women; University Hospitals Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute, a high-volume national referral center for complex cardiovascular procedures; and University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center, part of the NCI-designated Case Comprehensive Cancer Center. UH is home to some of the most prestigious clinical and research programs in the nation, including cancer, pediatrics, women's health, orthopedics, radiology, neuroscience, cardiology and cardiovascular surgery, digestive health, transplantation and urology. UH Cleveland Medical Center is perennially among the highest performers in national ranking surveys, including “America’s Best Hospitals” from U.S. News & World Report. UH is also home to Harrington Discovery Institute at University Hospitals – part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development. UH is one of the largest employers in Northeast Ohio with 28,000 physicians and employees. Advancing the Science of Health and the Art of Compassion is UH’s vision for benefitting its patients into the future, and the organization’s unwavering mission is To Heal. To Teach. To Discover. Follow UH on LinkedIn, Facebook @UniversityHospitals and Twitter @UHhospitals. For more information, visit