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Arkansas covers 52,068 square miles, with a 2017 estimated population of 3,004,279 people - 1,134,214 living in rural Arkansas (USDA-ERS). The state capital and largest city is Little Rock. According to 2017 data from the U.S. Census Bureau, 79.3% of the state’s population is white, 15.7% is African-American, 1.6% is Asian, 1.0% is American Indian or Alaska Native, 0.3% is Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and 7.6% is of Hispanic or Latino origin.

Arkansas Rural Healthcare Facilities

Arkansas Rural Healthcare Facilities map

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There are 80 hospitals in Arkansas (Kaiser, 2016), 29 of which are identified as Critical Access Hospitals (Flex Team, 7/2018). The state has 12 Federally Qualified Health Centers providing services at 129 sites (NACHC, 2017). There are also 88 Rural Health Clinics in Arkansas (CMS, 2017).

Selected Social Determinants of Health for Rural Arkansas

8% of Arkansas residents lack health insurance (Kaiser, 2016). According to the USDA Economic Research Service, the average per capita income for Arkansas residents in 2016 was $39,722, although rural per capita income lagged at $32,638. The ERS reports, based on 2016 ACS data, that the poverty rate in rural Arkansas is 18.9%, compared with 16.2% in urban areas of the state. 17.7% of the rural population has not completed high school, while 12.9% of the urban population lacks a high school diploma according to 2012-2016 ACS data reported by ERS. The unemployment rate in rural Arkansas is 4.4%, while in urban Arkansas, it is 3.3% (USDA-ERS, 2017).

For a national comparison, please see an overview of the United States.

Data Sources
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services: Rural Health Clinic List; Flex Monitoring Team: Critical Access Hospital List; Kaiser Family Foundation State Health Facts; National Association of Community Health Centers: Key Health Center Data By State; U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts; USDA Economic Research Service: State Fact Sheets


Arkansas Office of Rural Health & Primary Care
Phone: 501.280.4560
Supports access to quality health care services throughout Arkansas by helping develop community-based healthcare systems and services. Part of the Arkansas Department of Health.
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There are more organizations related to Arkansas in the organizations section.

Last Reviewed: 1/30/2018