Dartmouth Health sees financial losses mounting
Costs are outstripping revenues at Dartmouth Health, New Hampshire’s largest private employer
Driven largely by staffing expenses, costs are outstripping revenues at Dartmouth Health, New Hampshire’s largest private employer, according to filings with bondholders.
The Valley News reported that the Lebanon-based Dartmouth Health saw a $22.1 million loss, less than 1 percent, on a $2.9 billion operating budget in the fiscal year that ended June 30. It would have been a larger loss if not for $98.8 million DH received in federal stimulus funds.
That trend has only worsened in the first quarter of this year, which ended Sept. 30 with a $41.4 million loss, or nearly 6 percent, on a nearly $770 million operating budget. That loss includes $1.8 million in federal stimulus funds. The health system doesn’t expect any more, Audra Burns, a DH spokeswoman, said in a Monday email.
Burns said that to address the financial shortfalls, DH is focused on “improving our ability to discharge patients from our hospitals to an appropriate post-acute care facility.”
Staffing issues are at the top of the list of challenges. There is a national shortage of nurses, which has forced up wages both for permanent employees and for traveling nurses, according to chief financial officer Dan Jantzen.