ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Phoebe's voluntary Board of Directors approved a $530 million budget for fiscal year 2018, on Wednesday.
Phoebe leaders said that the hospital would "continue to meet our mission of providing high-quality healthcare services for all members of our community," even with reduced funding from the federal government, a lack of Medicaid expansion in Georgia, and uncertainty about healthcare reform.
The hospital's release said that keeping registered nurses is a challenge, making recruitment and retention a budget priority, and Phoebe employees will be eligible for a 3% merit pay increase. Any healthcare insurance premium increase for employees would be minimal.
Phoebe expects $45 million in capital improvements, and $65 million in charity and indigent care for patients from Dougherty, Lee, and surrounding counties.
Phoebe will pay nearly $867,000 to Dougherty County through a combination of voluntary payments, in lieu of taxes on Phoebe North, and property taxes on other properties, which are not being used for a specific tax-exempt purpose.
The hospital said it has not received any Dougherty County indigent care funds since 1998, and expects none from Dougherty County-- or adjoining Lee County taxpayers-- while many community hospitals do get substantial tax revenue.
Data from the Georgia Department of Community Health shows that Grady Memorial received $57 million from Fulton and Dekalb County, and Columbus Regional received $10.7 million from Muscogee County.
Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital will employ 2,891 people in the new budget, including 264 physicians. and 151 advanced practice providers. Annual payroll and benefits total $250 million.
The hospital said that the Georgia Hospital Association estimates Phoebe's annual economic impact at $1.2 billion to the Albany economy.
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