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Medical schools, teaching hospitals account for 3% of US GDP, report shows

The institutions that were studied added more than $562 billion in value to the nation's economy in 2017.

Jeff Lagasse, Associate Editor

Medical schools and teaching hospitals in the U.S. generate about 3.1 percent of the nation's gross domestic product and support more than 6.3 million jobs nationwide, according to a new study.

Conducted by RTI International on behalf of the Association of American Medical Colleges, the research examined the economic impact of AAMC member medical schools and teaching hospitals in 46 states where they are located, plus Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico.

The institutions that were studied added more than $562 billion in value to the nation's economy in 2017, including direct economic impact and substantial secondary economic effects on the communities in which they operate. Secondary impacts include activities such as institutional purchases of equipment, services, or supplies and employee purchases at local businesses. 

The more than 6.3 million jobs supported by the institutions studied correspond to 3.3 percent of the U.S. workforce and are spread out across multiple industries. Wages, salaries and benefits earned by workers in those jobs totalled $386 billion, or an average of $61,295 per job.

Of the total economic impact, research activities at medical schools and teaching hospitals resulted in $25.4 billion added to local economies and 313,604 jobs that generated $16.6 billion in salaries, wages, and benefits.

With those numbers, the economic contributions from medical schools and teaching hospitals are about on par with the transportation, warehousing, accommodation and food services industries, the data showed.

Twitter: @JELagasse
Email the writer: jeff.lagasse@himssmedia.com

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