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Alan Hale, left, and Priscilla Ravanelli, both of Rochester, look over the menu at Canadian Honker Restaurant across from Saint Marys Hospital Thursday, Aug. 3, 2017, in Rochester.

The Mayo Clinic Effect spreads far beyond the hospital walls to add an estimated $28 billion to the U.S. economy is no surprise of residents of Rochester.

"There's no doubt it makes a huge impact for us," said Nick Powers, general manager of the Canadian Honker restaurant across Second Street from Mayo Clinic's Saint Marys Hospital.

When we started 33 years ago, this was a small restaurant that seated 40 people. We essentially grew along with Mayo."

Ask Anthony Verderame of O&B Shoes to imagine what the popular Rochester business with two stores would be like without Mayo Clinic and he shudders.

"I can't do it. It's too scary," said Verderame, who estimated 60 percent to 70 percent of customers to the downtown are visiting Rochester for Mayo Clinic.

A study, commissioned by Mayo Clinic, calculated the health-care giant's national economic footprint as well as its more general "societal" benefits.

"We wanted to elevate the appreciation of everything Mayo is doing … to unify all of the goodness of Mayo," said Mayo Clinic spokeswoman Duska Anastasijevic.

The report called "Remarkable Moments of Sharing" was released Thursday. It was created by Ohio-based TEConomy Partners, which under a different name did a similar project for Mayo Clinic using 2008 data in 2010.

By calculating direct and indirect factors, TEConomy estimated that Mayo Clinic contributed 167,000 jobs to the U.S. economy in 2015 and $28 billion. In 2008, the report found Mayo Clinic making a national impact with $22 billion and 144,468 jobs.

"Mayo continues to grow nationally and continues to be a dominate player. You see the impacts continue to increase," said TEConomy principal and research director Marty Grueber, who worked on both the 2010 and 2016 reports.

This latest report went beyond just the economic impact to try to share lesser-known aspects of Mayo Clinic in the areas of charity, education, business and others, Anastasijevic said.

Powers says all Mayo Clinic does comes down to quality that Canadian Honker always looks for in potential employees.

"When we are interviewing people, number one thing we are looking for is compassion. That's what happens across the street and our employees need to have to it, too," he said.

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Business Reporter

Jeff has worked at newspapers as a reporter, columnist, editor, photographer and copy editor since 1992. He started at the Post Bulletin in 1999. Kiger is the PB's business reporter and writes a daily column, "Heard on the Street."