SONOMA – According to a new study commissioned by the healthcare facility, in 2014, Sonoma Valley Hospital (SVH) generated $104 million in economic activity affecting Sonoma County. It also supports 658 jobs within the hospital and in other business sectors.

“Hospitals in general are an important part of the economic engine for a region, and Sonoma Valley Hospital is a strong contributor both in the Sonoma Valley and throughout Sonoma County,” said Philip King, Ph.D., author of the report. King is an economics professor at San Francisco State University and has conducted many economic impact studies, including several for the Hospital Council of Northern and Central California.

The study also found SVH’s recent facility upgrades and expansion created close to 100 construction jobs with a related $16 million in economic activity annually over the last three years. Hospital spending also created nearly 80 jobs in real estate, restaurants and employment services, which was responsible for more than $9 million in economic activity last year.

The report also found that SVH benefited the community by providing $1.5 million in unreimbursed and charity care over the past three years, much of this going to disadvantaged populations.

“The report illustrates how Sonoma Valley Hospital contributes to the economic health of our region, in addition to supporting its physical health,” said Kelly Mather, SVH CEO. “I’m confident that the hospital will make even bigger contributions over time because it is in a stronger financial position today that it has been in more than a decade.”

SVH reported total payroll of $26 million in fiscal 2014, and operating revenues of $50.5 million, a 10 percent increase from 2011. It also spent $46 million in construction, upgrades and maintenance over the past three years, funded by the General Obligation Bond and philanthropic donations.

The report also notes that health care employment is especially valuable from an economic standpoint because these jobs contribute twice the country average for wages and salaries, and are more stable during economic downturns.

While the study reflects hospital and hospital-related jobs and economic activity, it does not include all medical services in the region, such as health centers or independent physician and medical specialty groups.

A full copy of the report is available at svh.com.