NorthBay Health: Good Stewardship of the 340B Program
NorthBay Health opened its first hospital in 1959 and remains Solano County's only locally based, locally managed nonprofit healthcare organization. NorthBay Medical Center in Fairfield and NorthBay VacaValley Hospital in Vacaville are known for providing quality services. The 154-bed NorthBay Medical Center is a regional center for pregnancy and childbirth, and is proudly designated as a Baby Friendly facility. Our Newborn Intensive Care Unit provides the most sophisticated services for premature or ill newborns within 50 miles. NorthBay Heart & Vascular Center offers the only open-heart surgery center in the county. The Emergency Department is a Chest Pain Center and STEMI Receiving Center for heart attack patients and a primary stroke center. And our Level II Trauma Center was the first established in Solano County and continues to be the busiest in the area. NorthBay Health is eligible to participate in the 340B program because our medical centers provide care to a disproportionate share of low-income Medicare and Medi-Cal (Medicaid) Patients.
Benefits of the 340B Program
NorthBay is a disproportionate share hospital with more than 2,000 employees who serve more than 68,000 patients each year. Our approximate 340B savings each year is $6 million. Our percent of Medicaid, Medicare or uninsured patients make up 82 percent of our payor mix. We have provided $132.4 million worth of uncompensated care in 2019. The savings realized through participation in the 340B program supports NorthBay Healthcare’s ability to provide services to uninsured patients in our community. In addition to providing free and discounted prescription drugs to low- income patients, NorthBay Health provides:
- Expanded medical care to remote service areas;
- Provided Covid-19 vaccine clinics for the community;
- Maintained a wealth of current services and procedures so that uninsured patients do not need to travel long distances for medical care;
- Improved access and increased patient care for the uninsured, under-insured and other vulnerable populations;
- Provided procedures and services to patients at a loss;
- Developed new service lines such as the Transition of care clinic and Hypertension clinic to ensure patients are discharged with access to appropriate medication to prevent re-admissions; and
- Provided a patient assistance program for retail prescriptions for uninsured and under-insured.
Impact of Scaling Back the 340B Program
Scaling back the 340B program would threaten NorthBay Health’s capacity to provide these important services and would greatly affect the health and well-being of our patients and our community. Readmission rates would soar and hospitals would be filled to capacity with sicker patients.