A study found that hospitals around Ohio invested more than $6 billion in community issues. These are programs that take health and wellness outside the walls of a hospital.
The Ohio Hospital Association says the increased spending on community benefit programs shows there's a need for hospitals to invest more in preventative efforts and other social needs in their neighborhoods.
The OHA’s John Palmer says these programs can prevent more costly hospital visits.
"To put together more strategy of identifying those health care needs,” Palmer said. “And then deploying programs to effectively address those and really meeting the community directly."
These projects include working to reduce infant mortality, substance abuse, provide aid for housing and transportation, and health screenings.