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U.S. Hospitals - Statistics & Facts

Hospitals are one of the most important cornerstones of every modern health system. Despite this fact, the total number of hospitals in the United States has constantly decreased over the past few decades. In 2019, most U.S. hospitals were non-profit facilities, while the rest was divided into nearly equal parts into for-profit or state/local government hospitals. In the same year, all U.S. hospitals provided approximately 919 thousand beds. Among hospital operators, the Hospital Corporation of America from Nashville, Tennessee, is one of the largest.

The percentage of people with a hospital stay has been slightly decreasing since 1997. Most hospitalizations in the United States are related to people aged 65 and over. The average length of a stay in a community hospital also fell from seven days in 1993 to 5.4 days in 2019. Furthermore, the total number of hospital admissions increased from 33.2 million in 1993 to a record high of 37.5 million in 2008 but then dropped to 36.2 million in 2019.

Hospitals in the United States generate a total revenue of over one trillion U.S. dollars. Hospital costs make up a large share of total health costs and have more than quadrupled since 1990. More than one-third of over four trillion U.S. dollars of total national health expenditures are attributed to hospital care costs. On the other hand, the economic impact of U.S. hospitals should not be underestimated. In 2016 for example, community hospitals contributed a total of three trillion U.S. dollars to the U.S. economy through direct and ripple effects. Over the last decade, employment in hospitals has increased steadily. In 2020, over seven million people are employed at hospitals in the United States.

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