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Pennsylvania covers 44,817 square miles, with a 2017 estimated population of 12,805,537 people – 1,461,418 of which live in rural Pennsylvania (USDA-ERS). Harrisburg is the state capital. The state’s largest cities are Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Allentown. According to 2017 data from the U.S. Census Bureau, 82.1% of the state’s population is white, 11.9% is African-American, 3.6% is Asian, 0.4% is American Indian or Alaska Native, 0.1% is Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and 7.3% is of Hispanic or Latino origin.

Pennsylvania Rural Healthcare Facilities

Pennsylvania Rural Healthcare Facilities map

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There are 184 hospitals in Pennsylvania (Kaiser, 2016), 15 of which are identified as Critical Access Hospitals (Flex Team, 7/2018). There are 72 Rural Health Clinics in the state (CMS, 2017), and 43 Federally Qualified Health Centers provide services at 274 sites (NACHC, 2017).

Selected Social Determinants of Health for Rural Pennsylvania

5% of Pennsylvania residents lack health insurance (Kaiser, 2016). According to the USDA Economic Research Service, the average per capita income for Pennsylvania residents in 2016 was $50,742, although rural per capita income lagged at $38,481. The ERS reports, based on 2016 ACS data, that the poverty rate in rural Pennsylvania is 13.8%, compared with 12.8% in urban areas of the state. 12.2% of the rural population has not completed high school, while 10.2% of the urban population lacks a high school diploma according to 2012-2016 ACS data reported by ERS. The 2015 unemployment rate in rural Pennsylvania is 5.6%, while in urban Pennsylvania it is 4.8% (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


Pennsylvania Office of Rural Health
Phone: 814.863.8214
Works to improve the health of rural communities and their residents by compiling, analyzing, and disseminating information to policy makers. Also works to encourage partnerships and identify opportunities for collaboration and cooperation.
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There are more organizations related to Pennsylvania in the organizations section.

Last Reviewed: 6/28/2017