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St. Luke’s Reports More Than $274 Million in Community Benefit in Fiscal Year 2012

By Ken Dey, News and Community
February 4, 2013

Boise, IDAHO – St. Luke’s Health System operations in the Treasure Valley recorded $274,136,596 in community benefit for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2012.

As a not-for-profit organization, St. Luke’s reports the amount of money the organization gives back to the community in exchange for being exempt from some property taxes.

The 2012 amount represents a 21 percent  increase over fiscal year 2011 when St. Luke’s recorded just more than $216 million in community benefit.

As a not-for-profit, St. Luke’s is exempt from some, but not all, taxes. In Fiscal year 2012, St. Luke’s was exempt from about $4.95 million in local real property taxes, but St. Luke’s still paid $1.6 million on non-exempt properties and also paid $250,000 in direct sales tax.

St. Luke’s is required to report its community benefit to the Ada County Commissioners each December. In the report, St. Luke’s reports amounts paid in the year for unreimbursed services such as charity care, bad debt write-offs and under-reimbursed care covered through government programs such as Medicaid and Medicare. In addition, St. Luke’s also includes the amount donated to community services both in direct funds and in-kind donations as well as the amount of capital spending St. Luke’s incurs in the fiscal year.

To see an example of how St. Luke's benefits community organizations watch this video about Computers For Kids. Over the last three years, St. Luke's has donated 3,668 surplus computers to the organization.

St. Luke’s community benefit consists of the following categories:

  • Charity care - $11,999,906
  • Bad debt – $22,132,949
  • Medicaid under-reimbursement – $28,764,183
  • Medicare under-reimbursement – $84,461,214
  • Community programs funding – $18,049,371
  • Additions to capital – $108,728,973
The amount of money St. Luke’s provides for charity care and the amount it has to write-off each year from bad debt and Medicare and Medicaid under-reimbursement continues to increase.  In 2012, St. Luke’s saw an overall increase of more than 27 percent in unreimbursed services.

“We continue to see a decline in reimbursement levels for government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid, which challenges St. Luke’s to continue looking at opportunities to gain more efficiencies in the way we deliver care.” said Chris Roth, St. Luke’s Treasure Valley CEO. “While declining reimbursements are a challenge, St. Luke’s remains committed to providing the highest quality of medical care to all patients regardless of their ability to pay.”

In addition to the costs related to under-reimbursed government programs, St. Luke’s continues to make investments in community services and programs. Some of the examples of community services funded by St. Luke’s include:

  • $8,626,232 – Education of health professionals. St. Luke’s supports this effort through things like scholarships, support for faculty positions and state universities and investment in capital projects at Idaho universities.
  • $1,772,185 – Family Medicine Residency of Idaho. St. Luke’s collaborates with Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in support of this effort.
  • $4,250,054 – Community Health Improvement Services. St. Luke’s provides community grants to organizations that improve the health of people in our region.
The final component of the community benefit report is the capital investments St. Luke’s makes in the communities it serves. As a not-for-profit organization, all additional revenue above expenses is invested back into the organization in the form of staff, buildings or new technology. Some examples of capital investments include:
  • $11.3 million – Construction of new emergency department in Nampa, Idaho.
  • $24.2 million – Implementation of a new electronic medical record.



About The Author

Ken Dey served as Public Relations Coordinator at St. Luke's from 2008-2014.