St. Peter's Health say community benefit spending higher than originally reported

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Posted at 3:58 PM, Dec 15, 2021

HELENA — St. Peter’s Health says low charitable giving figures cited in a recent Kaiser Health News article are the result of errors in tax filings.

The article, which was published by news agencies across the state, including MTN, said St. Peter's Health reported less than two percent or about $3.1 million.

KHN says in its reporting that it analyzed the hospital's 2019 IRS filings to come up with the number.

The hospital says the figure reported on the hospital's 990 form for 2018 has been corrected and amended.

St Peter’s CEO Wade Johnson says the figure is closer to 20 million dollars.

“This is a really big deal to us. We do what we do to take care of the community. It's our number one primary focus and it's just so important that the community understands how much we put into that and the fact that we make decisions every single day to deliver services that are not financially stable because it's the right thing to do. And we don't want the community to not be able to understand that,” says Johnson.

St. Peter's says their community benefit spending includes a variety of things like charity care, financial aid, subsidized health services, health professions education, and community charitable giving. Programs like behavioral health, hospice and palliative care are all subsidized with revenue that is generated by other programs at St. Peter’s Health.

Johnson's full letter to the community on the matter can be found here.