HEALTHCARE VITAL PART OF MILES CITY ANATOMY
December 26, 2012
By Paul Lewis, CEO, Holy Rosary Healthcare
Miles City has long been an economic and trade hub for people from across eastern Montana. We're blessed with a diverse economy rooted in several industries -- agriculture, healthcare, education, transportation, government, retail and professional services. This diversity has served our community well and provides a solid foundation for future growth. As CEO of Holy Rosary Healthcare, I appreciate operating our organization in this type of diverse climate and value the strength it brings our organization.
Holy Rosary Healthcare receives about 60 percent of our business from Miles City and Custer County. The remaining 40 percent of our business comes from great places like Glendive, Baker, Circle, Colstrip, and Broadus, who rely on healthcare from Holy Rosary for themselves and their loves ones. In fact, Holy Rosary routinely provides care to the people of a 13-county region of eastern Montana – about ¼ of Montana's geography.
This is not a new pattern for eastern Montana. In 1910, Holy Rosary Healthcare, at the time called County Hospital, began its 24-hour, 7-day-a-week commitment to provide important health care services. And people traveled several hours to receive their care in Miles City, a landmark stop between western Montana and the Dakotas. The hospital would quickly become and remain the region's medical hub and an economic shot-in-the-arm to the local economy.
The region has long counted on Holy Rosary to deliver quality healthcare services – to be there for emergencies, births, surgeries, and recoveries. Over the last few decades, we've diversified our organization to grow our same-day and outpatient services, add an extended care living community, and began offering hospice and palliative care services. It's the fullest continuum of care you'll find from a single organization between Billings and Bismarck. Beyond this important role, Holy Rosary is extremely vital to the economy of Custer County and eastern Montana.
The Bureau of Business and Economic Research at the University of Montana completed an independent study in 2010 on the Miles City business climate including the healthcare sector, and specifically studying Holy Rosary's economic impact locally and regionally. Here are a few noteworthy statistics from that independent study:
- The healthcare industry is the largest single, private contributor to the Custer County economy, accounting for 18 percent of total non-farm earnings in Custer County. Four of the 10 largest private employers in Miles City are from the healthcare sector – Holy Rosary Healthcare, Friendship Villa, Montana Health Network and Billings Clinic.
- Holy Rosary annual payroll exceeded $21 million in 2010, or 13 percent of total private, non-farm earnings in the county's economy, which is comparable to the entire retail trade sector.
- Holy Rosary Healthcare total annual expenditures in 2010 were $38.6 million, serving as a major driver in the local economy.
- Holy Rosary accounts for 17 percent of the private, non-farm employment base when considering the jobs generated across the eastern Montana economy.
- Holy Rosary brings in over $25 million annually in outside dollars to Custer County, creating new jobs and income for area residents.
Offering the 13-county region of eastern Montana primary and specialty health care services from Miles City is good for many reasons. Providing local access to high-quality care also has rippling effects throughout our community. For example, when people come to town for their doctor's appointment, stop for lunch and dinner at their favorite restaurants, buy groceries, sell their cattle at the sale barn, enjoy personalized service at their favorite shops and retailers, visit a government office to take care of necessary paperwork, attend a community event, fill their car (that they bought at one of our local dealerships) with fuel and buy new tires, see their accountant, and discover three more reasons why Miles City is a great place to do their business.
Holy Rosary Healthcare is proud to be part of the Miles City business community. Like our professional colleagues, we're working daily to differentiate our organization, grow our loyal customer base, strengthen our organization and community, provide a highly engaging work environment for our associates, and provide an excellent service experience for all those whom we care. The stronger each business in Miles City becomes, the stronger we are as a whole.