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Rural Health
Resources by Topic: Healthcare business and finance

Assisting Rural Consumers
Provides an overview of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid's (CMS) rural health strategy and how to assist rural populations with making healthcare decisions. Describes eligibility and enrollment barriers for consumers living in rural areas and other challenges they face, such as access, transportation, and cost.
Date: 06/2018
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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Opportunities and Challenges to Utilizing Telehealth Technologies in the Provision of Medication Assisted Therapies in the Medi-Cal Program
Describes advantages and barriers to using telehealth for delivery of medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to California's Medicaid enrollees, especially those in rural and underserved areas. Includes recommendations for changes to California state laws in order to alleviate the challenges. Appendix C lists states allowing telehealth prescribing.
Date: 06/2018
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Center for Connected Health Policy: The National Telehealth Policy Resource Center
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MedPAC Report to the Congress: Medicare and the Health Care Delivery System, June 2018
Evaluates Medicare payment issues and offers recommendations to the U.S. Congress. Includes a chapter on ensuring appropriate access to and use of hospital emergency department (ED) services that provides extensive information on rural access to ED services and identifies examples of rural off-campus emergency departments. Other sections of the report addressing rural concerns focus on post-acute care, quality and value payment programs, and medical device payment policies. Also includes a report on the effects of the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program.
Additional links: Fact Sheet
Date: 06/2018
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Medicare Payment Advisory Commission
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Report to Congress on Medicaid and CHIP, June 2018
Provides an in-depth examination of and makes recommendations on two critical issues, the high cost of prescription drugs and the opioid epidemic, as they relate to Medicaid. The opioid section includes discussion of rural access to treatment for substance use disorder. Also discusses Medicaid’s role as the nation’s largest payer for long-term services and supports.
Date: 06/2018
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission
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CMS Roadmap to Address the Opioid Epidemic
An overview of the efforts the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is undertaking to address the opioid epidemic. Highlights a three-pronged approach focusing on prevention, treatment, and data utilization to target prevention and treatment activities. Includes some information specific to rural areas.
Date: 06/2018
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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Geographic Variation in Uncompensated Care Between Rural and Urban Hospitals
Findings brief describing how uncompensated hospital care varies across regions of the country, using data from the 2014-2016 Medicare Cost Report Worksheet S-10. Features statistics including breakdowns by Critical Access Hospitals, other rural hospitals, and urban hospitals.
Author(s): Krystal G. Garcia, Kristie Thompson, Hilda A. Howard, George H. Pink
Date: 06/2018
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: North Carolina Rural Health Research Program
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2018 Annual Report of the Boards of Trustees of the Federal Hospital Insurance and Federal Supplementary Medical Insurance Trust Funds
Report detailing the current state of the Medicare Hospital Insurance (HI) and Supplemental Medical Insurance (SMI) Trust Funds. Discusses Medicare expenditures as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and makes short and long-range sustainability projections based on variable economic, demographic, and healthcare trends. Also explains the actuarial methods used to calculate the estimates. Includes information on Medicare amendments since the 2017 report, including some that impact rural providers and beneficiaries.
Additional links: 2018 Expanded and Supplementary Tables and Figures (ZIP file)
Author(s): Boards of Trustees, Federal Hospital Insurance and Federal Supplementary Medical Insurance Trust Funds
Date: 06/2018
Type: Document
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Health Insurance Coverage by Occupation Among Adults Aged 18–64 Years — 17 States, 2013–2014
Examines changes in health insurance coverage between 2013 and 2014. Includes data on health insurance among employed workers by selected characteristics, including rural residence. Also provides health insurance data by occupational group. Report covers 17 states that asked all Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System survey participants about healthcare coverage and asked employed participants about their industry and occupation.
Author(s): Winifred L. Boal, Jia Li, Aaron Sussell
Citation: MMWR (Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report), 67(21), 593-598
Date: 06/2018
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
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2017 Telehealth Policy for the National Rural Health Association
Policy position brief showing how telemedicine can help safety net providers care for people who live and work in rural and underserved areas. Lists types of programs, explores reimbursement issues, gives examples of innovative programs with telemedicine components, and offers recommendations for increasing access and improving outcomes.
Author(s): Becky Sanders, Zach Allen, Greg Maurer
Date: 05/2018
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: National Rural Health Association
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EMS Services in Rural America: Challenges and Opportunities
Policy brief describing challenges for rural EMS providers, including workforce shortages and inconsistent funding. Features statistics including percentage of potentially excess deaths for 5 leading causes of death, with breakdowns by metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas, and average EMS call time response and distribution of all-volunteer and all-paid staff EMS agencies, with breakdowns by 4 levels of population density. Discusses effects of the opioid crisis and Critical Access Hospital closures on provision of EMS services.
Author(s): Nikki King, Marcus Pigman, Sarah Huling, Brian Hanson
Date: 05/2018
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: National Rural Health Association
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