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The University of California’s academic health centers provided $4.1 billion in community benefits in fiscal year 2020-2021.

Net community benefits expenses in FY 2020-2021 reached 10.2 percent of systemwide operating expenses for University of California Health hospitals, excluding Medicare items. 

This level of community benefits puts the UC academic health system in the 75th percentile of California not-for-profit hospitals that have more than 230 beds.

World-Class Care Regardless of Ability to Pay

A significant share of that $4.1 billion was for $1 billion in care for which UC hospitals were not reimbursed for treating Medi-Cal patients, as well as $204 million in care delivered by UC faculty practice groups. UC hospitals' community benefit expenses also included $1.7 million in unreimbursed hospital care for people covered by Medicare, plus an additional $545 million at UC faculty practice groups.

UC hospitals see thousands of inpatient admissions and millions of outpatient visits each year. Roughly 70 percent of UCH patients have Medicare, Medi-Cal or do not have health insurance.

As such, UC academic health centers care for some of the communities and patients in most need, providing access to world-class care regardless of a person's ability to pay.


Community Benefits Programs and Activities

Community benefits are programs or activities that provide treatment or promote health and healing as a response to community needs.

The programs from UC academic health centers are developed with a focus on:

  • Providing vital support to improve population health and achieve strategic objectives related to the quality, efficiency and affordability of health care
  • Highlighting the significant resources devoted to providing access to care for low-income and other underserved patient populations
  • Helping to advance knowledge through health professions education and research that benefits the public

Our community benefits programs and activities advance UCH’s mission of patient care, research and education.

Examples of community benefits include:

  • Free or discounted health services
  • Unreimbursed costs for care to Medi-Cal recipients
  • Health professions education
  • Subsidized health services
  • Research
  • Financial or in-kind support for non-profit community organizations

UCH’s community benefit report provides details on these expenses from five of the University’s academic health centers: UC Davis Health, UC San Diego Health, UCI Health, UCLA Health and UCSF Health, including the private non-profit Children’s Hospital and Research Center at Oakland.

The University also operates 20 health professional schools that provide many substantive benefits to communities throughout the state and beyond. UCH plans to include data regarding the community benefits provided through the health professional schools in future community benefits reports.

Community Benefits and Outreach in Action

Examples of these programs at each academic medical center include:

Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA)

University of California Health’s academic health centers collaborate with other local health systems to complete a Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) every three years.

The CHNAs identify significant health needs of people living in the communities they serve so that health organizations can act upon unmet needs. While CHNAs are developed every three years, University of California Health’s community benefit report is published annually to provide transparency about ongoing activities.

UCH’s 2021 Community Benefits Report

Read our Community Benefits report to learn more