Rural Health Network Development Planning Grant Program
The Rural Health Network Development Planning Grant Program provides grants to promote the planning and development of healthcare networks in order to achieve efficiencies; expand access to, coordinate, and improve the quality of essential healthcare services; and strengthen the rural healthcare system as a whole.
The major focus of the Network Planning Grant is to support multiple (at least 3) rural healthcare entities that have not previously collaborated in a formal manner, but want to work together and form a healthcare network. The grant program supports one year of planning to develop and assist healthcare networks in becoming operational.
Grantees may use funds to conduct planning activities that must support at least one of the following:
Achieve efficiencies - Identifying ways to achieve better system efficiencies and improve regional and/or local rural healthcare services. This may include:
- Conducting community health and/or provider needs assessments at the regional and/or local level
- Updating a health information technology plan, which helps to improve outcomes for rural patients, based on the current standards of care, reporting enhancements, and/or capacity
- Collaborating with the local charitable hospital to develop an implementation plan for addressing community needs identified by the triennial community health needs assessment
- Identifying a plan for developing regional systems of care to better meet rural patient concerns
Expand access to, coordinate, and improve the quality of essential healthcare services - Identify ways to build capacity and a network infrastructure that enables entities to coordinate care and increase access to care for rural communities. This may include:
- Developing a network business and/or operations plan
- Identifying the degree to which the network members are ready to integrate their functions and share clinical and/or administrative resources
- Assessing appropriateness/readiness for Patient Centered Medical Home accreditation
- Identifying strategies to communicate with the community about changes in the healthcare landscape and how to maintain access to viable healthcare services
- Developing a plan to expand the role of emergency medical services within the community
- Developing a plan to ensure access to essential services in communities that have lost a hospital or consider options for ensuring access in areas where the hospital is at risk of closing
Strengthen the rural healthcare system as a whole - Enhance community and partner relationships to promote involvement and participation in network planning activities. This may include:
- Identifying ways to encourage cross-organizational collaboration and leadership commitment
- Assessing the network’s sustainability and viability
- Identifying opportunities for the network to better address regional and/or local population health needs
- Identifying and establishing ways to obtain regional and/or local community support/buy-in around the development of the network
- Identify a strategy to leverage broadband connectivity to support health information technology applications in rural communities
- Developing a transition plan that assures seamless access to care across a full range of services in the event of a hospital closure/conversion
The applicant organization must be a rural nonprofit organization, public entity, or federally recognized tribe that represents a consortium/network of 3 or more healthcare providers. The applicant organization must be located in a non-metropolitan county or in a rural census tract of a metropolitan county, and all services must be provided in a non-metropolitan county or rural census tract.
Award Ceiling: $100,000
Estimated Number of Awards: 24
Estimated Total Program Funding: $2,400,000
Links to the full announcement and electronic application are available through grants.gov.
Applicants are required to notify the appropriate State Office of Rural Health (SORH) of an intent to apply to this program. A copy of the letter of intent sent to the SORH and any response received must be included as an attachment to the application. Letter of intent procedures for U.S. territories that do not have a SORH are available in the application instructions.
Technical assistance webinar
Playback number: 866.443.4138
For complete information about funding programs, including your application status, please contact funders directly. Summaries are provided for your convenience only. RHIhub does not take part in application processes or monitor application status.