Community benefit is a well-defined set of activities articulated by the Internal Revenue Service. The IRS has identified specific categories of community benefit with detailed definitions and specific accounting guidelines. The IRS requires that to be reported, a community benefit must respond to an identified community need and meet a community benefit objective, such as improving community health, increasing access to health services, enhancing public health, educating health professionals, or relieving the government burden to improve health.
Integral to the mission of Catholic and other not-for-profit health care organizations, community benefit is an extension of not-for-profit hospitals' historic mission to meet the needs of the time in their communities, especially the needs of vulnerable and disenfranchised members in their communities.
For over 30 years, CHA has been the leading source of information and tools for assessment, planning and reporting not-for-profit hospital community benefit.