WASHINGTON, Dec. 20 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Catholic Health Association of the United States (CHA) is pleased that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) adopted the CHA approach for reporting community benefit in the final Form 990, Schedule H released today. Schedule H, which is a new part of the Form 990, will be completed annually by Section 501(c)(3) hospitals to provide information on their tax-exemption. "CHA is proud of what hospitals do for their communities and the new Schedule H will provide a standardized way for hospitals to describe, both qualitatively and quantitatively, the ways in which they benefit their communities," stated Sr. Carol Keehan, DC, CHA president and chief executive officer. "CHA believes that hospitals should be accountable for the privilege of tax-exemption and Schedule H promotes this accountability." CHA is still in the process of reviewing the numerous changes included in the final Form 990. However, it appears that the IRS did make significant revisions to the June draft based on the many comments it received from the non-profit sector. With respect to the six key issues identified in CHA's comment letter as needing change, the IRS revised the Form to address CHA's primary concerns in all but one instance. While the final Form did not incorporate CHA's suggestion to include a community benefit category for community building programs specifically designed to eliminate the root causes of illness and disease, the final Schedule H does contain a new table for hospitals to highlight these activities. "The IRS's willingness to engage in an ongoing dialogue with the hospital sector during this process was unprecedented and, I think, resulted in a better outcome. While the IRS did not accept all of our recommended changes, we understand the basis on which the IRS decisions were made," added Lisa Gilden, CHA vice president, general counsel. CHA expects to continue its dialogue with the IRS as the instructions and worksheets for completing the Form 990 are developed. In addition, the association's community benefit staff will update the widely-used CHA Guide for Planning and Reporting Community Benefit to assist all hospitals in planning, implementing and reporting community benefit in light of the new Form 990. The Catholic Health Association of the United States (CHA), founded in 1915, supports the Catholic health ministry's pursuit of the strategic directions of mission, ethics, and advocacy. As the nation's largest group of not-for-profit sponsors, systems, and facilities, the ministry is committed to improving the health status of communities and creating quality and compassionate health care that works for everyone. For more information, visit the CHA website at www.chausa.org.
SOURCE Catholic Health Association of the United States