2017 Maryland Code
Health - General
Title 19 - Health Care Facilities
Subtitle 3 - Hospitals and Related Institutions
Part I - Definitions; General Provisions
§ 19-303. Nonprofit hospitals; community benefit

  • (a) Definitions. --
    • (1) In this section the following words have the meanings indicated.
    • (2) "Commission" means the Health Services Cost Review Commission.
    • (3) "Community benefit" means an activity that is intended to address community needs and priorities primarily through disease prevention and improvement of health status, including:
      • (i) Health services provided to vulnerable or underserved populations such as Medicaid, Medicare, or Maryland Children's Health Program enrollees;
      • (ii) Financial or in-kind support of public health programs;
      • (iii) Donations of funds, property, or other resources that contribute to a community priority;
      • (iv) Health care cost containment activities;
      • (v) Health education, screening, and prevention services; and
      • (vi) Financial or in-kind support of the Maryland Behavioral Health Crisis Response System.
    • (4) "Community needs assessment" means the process by which unmet community health care needs and priorities are identified.
  • (b) Identifying community health care needs. -- In identifying community health care needs, a nonprofit hospital:
    • (1) Shall consider, if available, the most recent community needs assessment developed by the Department or the local health department for the county in which the nonprofit hospital is located;
    • (2) May consult with community leaders and local health care providers; and
    • (3) May consult with any appropriate person that can assist the hospital in identifying community health needs.
  • (c) Community benefit report. --
    • (1) Each nonprofit hospital shall submit an annual community benefit report to the Health Services Cost Review Commission detailing the community benefits provided by the hospital during the preceding year.
    • (2) The community benefit report shall include:
      • (i) The mission statement of the hospital;
      • (ii) A list of the initiatives that were undertaken by the hospital;
      • (iii) The cost to the hospital of each community benefit initiative;
      • (iv) The objectives of each community benefit initiative;
      • (v) A description of efforts taken to evaluate the effectiveness of each community benefit initiative;
      • (vi) A description of gaps in the availability of specialist providers to serve the uninsured in the hospital; and
      • (vii) A description of the hospital's efforts to track and reduce health disparities in the community that the hospital serves.
  • (d) Nonprofit Hospital Community Health Benefit Report. --
    • (1) The Commission shall compile the reports required under subsection (c) of this section and issue an annual Nonprofit Hospital Community Health Benefit Report.
    • (2) In addition to the information required under paragraph (1) of this subsection, the Nonprofit Hospital Community Health Benefit Report shall contain a list of the unmet community health care needs identified in the most recent community needs assessment prepared by the Department or local health department for each county.
    • (3) The Nonprofit Hospital Community Health Benefit Report shall be made available to the public free of charge.
    • (4) The Commission shall submit a copy of the annual Nonprofit Hospital Community Health Benefit Report, subject to ยง 2-1246 of the State Government Article, to the House Health and Government Operations Committee and the Senate Finance Committee.
  • (e) Adoption of regulations. -- The Commission shall adopt regulations, in consultation with representatives of nonprofit hospitals, that establish:
    • (1) A standard format for reporting the information required under this section;
    • (2) The date on which nonprofit hospitals must submit the annual community benefit reports; and
    • (3) The period of time that the annual community benefit report must cover.
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