Gainesville-Hall County is a growing regional center of Healthcare Services for over one million people in a 19-county area of Northeast Georgia. Immediate access to healthcare service providers is a benefit to quality of life for area residents, and the concentration of providers in Hall County is a significant source of employment and income. Link here for QUICK FACTS.
“Access to world-class healthcare improves the quality of life for residents in Gainesville-Hall County and throughout the region,” said Kit Dunlap, President and CEO of the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce. “The quantity and quality of healthcare services available in Hall County allows area residents to have top-rated care close to their homes, families and friends. Additionally, the indigent care by our healthcare providers has an immeasurable impact on our residents in need.”
The Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce recently completed a visual geographic information system study of 366 Hall County Healthcare Providers by employment with a variety of medical and dental service providers profiled. The study concludes the community’s growing healthcare sector employs 12,500 or approximately 13% of the workforce in Hall County. The Georgia Department of Labor reports the average salary for the sector in Hall County is $59,020, signifying that healthcare providers in Hall County account for an estimated $740 million in annual payroll.
Nearly 75% of Hall County’s Healthcare employment is concentrated in the City of Gainesville, with 249 healthcare service provider locations employing 9,430 and an estimated $557 million in annual payroll.
The largest provider, Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGMC) in Gainesville, has 4,628 employees and is ranked a ‘Top 50 Hospital in the Nation’ by Healthgrades, an independent healthcare quality rating service. The geographic study performed by the Chamber indicates NGMC is at the epicenter of a large community of physicians groups, specialty medical services, dental services, elder care facilities and independent clinics.
“Northeast Georgia Medical Center is a significant economic engine for Gainesville and Hall County,” said Carol Burrell, President and CEO for Northeast Georgia Health System. “According to annual reports produced by the Georgia Hospital Association, NGMC provides an economic impact on our local and state economies that is greater than $1.75 billion, and we know the majority of that impact is made here in our local community and region. We take that responsibility very seriously – knowing that so many in our community rely not just on the healthcare services we provide, but also on our financial stability and economic stimulus.”
Other major providers by employment in the study include physicians groups such as Longstreet Clinic, Northeast Georgia Diagnostic Clinic and Northeast Georgia Physicians Group (a physicians group employed by Northeast Georgia Health System).
The study also highlights other growing concentrations of healthcare service providers in South Hall County, employing nearly 2,500 in Braselton, Oakwood, Flowery Branch and Buford. Northeast Georgia Medical Center Braselton is a fast growing center for healthcare services for residents on the I-85 corridor; the hospital is surrounded by a growing number of healthcare providers that have expanded their service coverage from Gainesville, Athens and Gwinnett County.
A study by the Governor’s High Demand Career Initiative concluded that healthcare is one of the high-demand career fields anticipated to grow over the next five to ten years in Georgia. According to the Georgia Department of Labor, employment in healthcare services is expected to grow 2.8% per year and add nearly 140,000 jobs across Georgia through 2022.
Northeast Georgia Medical Center is developing a new Graduate Medical Education (GME) program to train physician residents after medical school. The first residents arrive in 2019, and NGMC anticipates as many as 170 residents by 2023. The GME program will have an estimated $66 million economic impact for Hall County.
Local institutions like Brenau University, the University of North Georgia and Lanier Technical College play an important role in developing the skilled talent and professional training to fill the growing demand for healthcare professionals.
As part of the Chamber’s study of the healthcare community, it also interviewed developers in Hall County to collect their perspective of the impact of healthcare providers, employment and income on retail and commercial development:
Tim Evans, Vice President of Economic Development for the Greater Hall Chamber, facilitated the healthcare study, noting, “Quality of life and healthcare is a primary benefit of having a first-class regional healthcare center in Hall County, but there is definitely a halo effect of healthcare employment and income that benefits other commercial, retail and residential development in Hall County.”
Community leader and real estate executive, Doug Carter of Don Carter Realty said, “Our quality of life is improved in so many ways by our world class healthcare services and the caliber of people that deliver these services. The growing healthcare community has been a catalyst for quality residential growth, the arts, philanthropy and downtowns throughout Gainesville-Hall County.”
Frank Norton, Jr., CEO of The Norton Agency, commented, “Hall County has become North Georgia’s healthcare epicenter. The economic impact has rippled across the country’s fabric impacting commercial office space, employment, consumer spending, residential housing, senior healthcare, active adult living communities and professional services.”
In Braselton, real estate professional and Braselton Town Council Member Tony Funari added, “The growing healthcare services community in Braselton is providing access to nationally acclaimed healthcare providers and related businesses. This is having a very positive influence in home buying, residential development as well as home values. We are experiencing tremendous activity from restaurants, hotels and new service businesses.”
About the Study
The Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce performed the study of Healthcare Service Providers by compiling data from various sources, including the Georgia Department of Labor, Businesswise 2018 data and more than 300 coordinating phone calls and emails with Greater Hall Chamber members in the healthcare community to confirm healthcare employment by location. During the course of the study from June 2018 until its release in January 2019, numerous healthcare providers opened their doors for the first time, added employment or additional locations throughout Hall County. The Greater Hall Chamber is grateful for the support of the healthcare community in Hall County for their efforts in supporting this study.