Tom Sullivan, senior vice president strategy and development, and Jackie Ryan, vice president of corporate strategy, are members of a subcommittee to create a Community Health Needs Assessment by July 31, 2013. The assessment is required by the IRS.
ALBANY, Ga. — A special subcommittee was convened Wednesday at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital to discuss an upcoming IRS deadline. According to a new requirement by the IRS, the hospital will have until July 31, 2013 to provide a completed Schedule H, or Community Health Needs Assessment, or face fines of $50,000.
The IRS will require the assessment be conducted every three years, said Jackie Ryan, vice president corporate strategy at Phoebe Putney Hospital.
Ryan said that community benefits are defined as programs or activities that provide treatment and/or promote health and healing as a response to community needs. They must not be provided for marketing purposes.
A community health needs assessment is a systematic process involving the community in identifying and analyzing community health needs and assets in order to prioritize, plan and act upon unmet community health needs, Ryan said.
The benefit plan which the IRS requires be in place by the end of July 31, 2013 must be board-approved and address prioritized health needs and problems identified in the community health needs assessment.
According to Ryan, Phoebe Putney historically has provided benefits to the Albany community.
“The difference now,” Ryan said, “is that in order to qualify for tax benefits and avoid fines, we must provide the assessment every three years.”
Ryan said that community benefits now provided by Phoebe include a school program in which qualified nurses are provided to the county’s 29 public schools and various wellness programs, as well as flu shots, training of nursing students, financial and in-kind support and clinical research.
During its initial meeting, the basic functions the subcommittee would have until completion of the assessment was discussed. It was decided the pane; would act in an advisory capacity for the Community Benefit Program, review reports from the Internal Work Team and approve the implementation plan for management recommendation to full Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital Board. It was agree also to hold the open subcommittee meeting once each month.
According to Ryan, a special Web-based software, commissioned by Phoebe, will provide data comparing the health of the local population with that of individuals nationwide and in other parts of the state. The software will be on the Phoebe website and will be available to anyone, Ryan said.