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Rural Health
Resources by Topic: Closures of healthcare facilities and services

Risk of Closure Among Independent and Multihospital-Affiliated Rural Hospitals
Study examining the risk of rural hospital closure for independent hospitals and hospitals affiliated with other facilities or a health system. Analyzes 2007-2019 data from the American Hospital Association, Irving Levin Associates, and the University of North Carolina Sheps Center representing a national cohort of rural hospitals. Notes financial stability for affiliated and independent hospitals as well as policy interventions to support hospitals at risk of closure.
Author(s): H. Joanna Jiang, Kathryn R. Fingar, Lan Liang, Rachel Mosher Henke
Citation: JAMA Health Forum, 3(7), e221835
Date: 07/2022
Type: Document
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Rx for the Rural Healthcare Workforce and Access to Care
Podcast with Tom Morris of the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy about trends related to the rural healthcare workforce and efforts to overcome challenges. Discusses the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic, rural hospital closures, telehealth, graduate medical education in rural areas, community health workers and community paramedics, funding opportunities to promote healthcare access in rural areas, the opioid crisis, and more.
Author(s): Jessica Nicholson
Date: 05/2022
Type: Audio
Sponsoring organization: The Conference Board
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Association Between Rural Hospital Service Changes and Community Demographics
Investigates possible differences in service availability by local demographics and examines the association between proportion of a rural community belonging to an Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality-identified priority population and local hospital service changes. Features statistics on changes in healthcare service availability in nonmetro hospitals from 2011-2017, with breakdowns by areas with greater or smaller percentage of the population that is Hispanic/Latino, Black, aged 65 or greater, or in poverty. Also includes statistics on changes in availability of 8 types of services in nonmetro hospitals from 2011-2017.
Author(s): Tyler L. Malone, Kathleen Knocke, George H. Pink, et al.
Date: 05/2022
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: North Carolina Rural Health Research Program
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Obstetrics: U.S. Rural Hospitals
Infographic presenting statistics on obstetrics care in rural community hospitals in the U.S. Includes data on the number of births in rural hospitals, rural hospitals without obstetrics units, obstetric unit closures, and the number of women of reproductive age who live in maternity care deserts.
Date: 04/2022
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: American Hospital Association
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Rural Quality of Life: Opportunities and Challenges for the Rural Care Economy
Recording of a March 22, 2022, hearing of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry on challenges and opportunities for the care economy in rural communities. Features testimony from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Undersecretary for Rural Development, the University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center, and Southeast Health Group, a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) in rural La Junta, Colorado.
Additional links: Carrie Henning-Smith, University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center - Testimony, Joseph Carrica, Southeast Health Group - Testimony
Date: 03/2022
Type: Video/Multimedia
Sponsoring organization: Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry
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Federally Qualified Health Center Strategies for Coping with Hospital Closure: Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas (CHC/SEK)
Describes how the Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas (CHC/SEK), a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) took over two Mercy Hospital Fort Scott primary care clinics when the hospital closed in 2018. Explores CHC/SEK's response to the hospital's closure, the subsequent economic impact on the community, and lessons learned for rural FQHCs in similar situations.
Date: 03/2022
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Capital Link
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Since 1990, Rural Hospital Closures Have Increasingly Occurred in Counties that Are More Urbanized, Diverse, and Economically Unequal
Findings brief describing the socioeconomic, demographic, and health system characteristics of rural counties with and without hospital closures between 1990-2020. Features county-level maps showing rural hospital closures by decade, and statistics including percentage of closures by census region, median share of racial and ethnic groups and socioeconomic indicators in closure counties, and share of rural counties classified as whole-county Health Professional Shortage Areas prior to closure. Includes a table showing share of counties in Rural-Urban Continuum Code categories 1-9 in 1990, 2003, and 2013.
Author(s): Arrianna Marie Planey, Julie R. Perry, Erin E. Kent, et al.
Date: 03/2022
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: North Carolina Rural Health Research Program
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Chartis Center for Rural Health Research & Resources for the 2022 National Rural Health Association's Rural Health Policy Institute Conference
Offers research and analysis of the stability of the rural healthcare safety net. Includes Pandemic Increases Pressure on Rural Hospitals & Communities: Vulnerability, Health Inequity and Staffing Crisis Amplified in Pandemic's Third Year and presentation slides on this report from the 2022 National Rural Health Association Policy Institute. Provides links to national and state data tables showing the financial impact of federal policies on rural hospitals.
Date: 02/2022
Type: Website
Sponsoring organization: Chartis Center for Rural Health
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The Problem Of The Color Line: Spatial Access To Hospital Services For Minoritized Racial And Ethnic Groups
Study examining inequities in access to healthcare by race and geography, covering distances to hospital services for minoritized ZIP Code Tabulation Areas (ZTCAs). Discusses factors that lead to disparities in access for rural minority communities, including policy, rural hospital closures, and safety-net program issues.
Additional links: Story Map: The Problem Of The Color Line
Author(s): Jan M. Eberth, Peiyin Hung, Gabriel A. Benavidez, et al.
Citation: Health Affairs, 41(2), 237-246
Date: 02/2022
Type: Document
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Rural Hospitals that Closed between 2017‐20: Profitability and Liquidity in the Year Before Closure
Examines the pre-closure profitability and liquidity performance of 56 rural hospitals that closed between January 2017 and August 2020. Compares this data to the median performance of rural hospitals that remained open each year.
Author(s): Andrew S. Osgood, George H. Pink
Date: 01/2022
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: North Carolina Rural Health Research Program
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