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Rural Health
Resources by Topic: Policy

COVID-19 Emergency Declaration Blanket Waivers for Health Care Providers
Provides an overview of waived Medicare regulations in response to COVID-19. Lists waivers that impact all types of providers, including Critical Access Hospitals, Rural Health Clinics, Federally Qualified Health Centers, physicians, skilled nursing facilities, and others. Includes information on changes to telemedicine and quality improvement programs.
Date: 12/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Medicare Fee-for-Service (FFS) Billing
Addresses issues related to Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) billing during the COVID-19 public health emergency. Covers COVID-19 test specimen collection, diagnostic laboratory services, hospital services, ambulance services, Rural Health Clinics (RHCs) and Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), telehealth, skilled nursing facility services, home health, and other services.
Date: 12/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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CMS: Current Emergencies: Coronavirus Disease 2019
Guidance from CMS for healthcare facilities and labs related to COVID-19. Includes clinical and technical guidance on infection control and prevention for specific types of facilities, information on billing and coding, coverage for services related to COVID-19, and other topics.
Date: 12/2020
Type: Website
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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COVID-19: Urgent Actions Needed to Better Ensure an Effective Federal Response
Examines the federal government's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Provides an overview of federal actions on healthcare and economic policy areas, including Medicare telehealth waivers and funding to enhance broadband access in rural communities. Offers 11 recommendations to federal agencies and one matter for congressional consideration to ensure an effective government response to COVID-19.
Additional links: Full Report
Date: 11/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Government Accountability Office
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The Future of State Telehealth Policy
Provides an overview of state and federal telehealth flexibilities implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic. Discusses long-term considerations for governors regarding the impact of these flexibilities on healthcare delivery and payment and the appropriateness of these policies in the future.
Date: 11/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: National Governors Association
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The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices' Ethical Principles for Allocating Initial Supplies of COVID-19 Vaccine — United States, 2020
Discusses four ethical principles that will inform the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommendations for the initial allocation of COVID-19 vaccine: maximizing benefits and minimizing harms; promoting justice; mitigating health inequities; and promoting transparency. The section on health inequities includes discussion of concerns for rural residents.
Author(s): Nancy McClung, Mary Chamberland, Kathy Kinlaw, et al.
Citation: MMWR (Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report), 69(47), 1782-1786
Date: 11/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
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Maintaining Flexible Telehealth Policies After COVID-19
Provides an overview of the views of stakeholder organizations on topics for federal policymakers to consider regarding Medicare telehealth flexibilities after the COVID-19 public health emergency. Covers payment policy, telehealth services, and provider and patient location, among other topics.
Author(s): Sue Felt-Lisk
Date: 11/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Mathematica Policy Research
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Informing Health Care Workforce Policy by Leveraging Data: A Toolkit for States
Describes how healthcare workforce data can be used to address questions regarding access to care. Discusses three key considerations for states to improve their healthcare workforce data collection practices. Includes examples from states that utilized data to inform policy.
Date: 11/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: National Governors Association
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Community Health Access and Rural Transformation (CHART) Model State Medicaid Participation Factsheet
Provides an overview of the Community Health Access and Rural Transformation (CHART) Model, with a focus on the Community Transformation Track. Discusses the role of State Medicaid Agencies (SMA) and Memorandum of Understanding requirements, and outlines the time of required SMA activities.
Date: 11/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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Ensuring Health Across Rural Minnesota in 2030
Offers recommendations to policymakers and stakeholders on how to expand access to high-quality and inexpensive healthcare for rural communities in Minnesota. Covers trends in factors that may affect rural health, such as increased diversity, older populations, higher healthcare costs, lack of broadband, closures of healthcare facilities, and more. Discusses how the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated issues in rural communities.
Date: 11/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: National Rural Health Resource Center
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