Hospital Fundraising Has Varied Results
Community hospitals and hospital programs that focus on mental health or substance abuse treatment are less likely to receive donations than more renowned facilities or programs with "the popular appeal of cancer or pediatrics," the New York Times reports.
Last year, hospitals and other health care organizations received a record $7 billion in donations, about 60% of which came from individuals, according to the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy. However, community hospitals, "which might not have as many wealthy patients who are potential donors, ... have mixed success in raising money for basic programs" such as emergency department services or care for low-income patients, according to the Times.
Foundations "particularly shy away from giving money to what are essentially run-of-the-mill services," the Times reports. In addition, the mental health field "does not lend itself easily to traditional fundraising methods" because many patients who use these services "are not able to donate to these programs, and approaching donors can be difficult because of the potential stigma associated with psychiatric care," according to the Times (Abelson, New York Times, 11/13).