Skip to main content


Kentucky covers 39,728 square miles, with a 2017 estimated population of 4,454,189 people – with 1,830,084 people living in rural areas (USDA-ERS). Frankfort is the state capital, and the state’s largest cities are Louisville, Lexington, and Bowling Green. According to 2017 data from the U.S. Census Bureau, 87.8% of the state’s population is white, 8.4% is African-American, 1.6% is Asian, 0.3% is American Indian or Alaska Native, 0.1% is Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and 3.7% is of Hispanic or Latino origin.

Kentucky Rural Healthcare Facilities

Kentucky Rural Healthcare Facilities map

View full-size map

There are 103 hospitals in Kentucky (Kaiser, 2016), 27 of which are identified as Critical Access Hospitals (Flex Team, 7/2018). There are 191 Rural Health Clinics in Kentucky (CMS, 2017) and 24 Federally Qualified Health Centers provide services at 275 sites in the state (NACHC, 2017).

Selected Social Determinants of Health for Rural Kentucky

6% of Kentucky residents lack health insurance (Kaiser, 2016). According to the USDA Economic Research Service, the average per capita income for Kentucky residents in 2016 was $38,926, although rural per capita income lagged at $32,903. The ERS reports, based on 2016 ACS data, that the poverty rate in rural Kentucky is 23.6%, compared with 14.9% in urban areas of the state. 20.6% of the rural population has not completed high school, while 11.5% of the urban population lacks a high school diploma according to 2012-2016 ACS data reported by ERS. The unemployment rate in rural Kentucky is 5.9%, while in urban Kentucky, it is 4.3% (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


Kentucky State Office of Rural Health
Phone: 606.439.3557
Partners with hospitals, community organizations, and non-profit groups, in promoting healthcare in rural Kentucky. Located in the Center of Excellence in Rural Health at the University of Kentucky Medical Center.
view details

There are more organizations related to Kentucky in the organizations section.

Last Reviewed: 1/8/2018