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Rural Health Information Hub

Formerly the
Rural Assistance Center



Washington covers 66,544 square miles, with a 2016 estimated population of 7,288,000 people – 730,531 living in rural Washington (USDA-ERS). Olympia, the capital, is located in the western region of the state. The state’s largest cities are Seattle, Spokane and Tacoma. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 80.3% of the state’s population is white, 8.4% is Asian, 4.1% is Black/African American, 1.9% is American Indian and Alaska Native, and 12.4% is of Hispanic/Latino origin (U.S. Census, 2015).

Washington Rural Healthcare Facilities

Washington Rural Healthcare Facilities map

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There are 90 hospitals in Washington (Kaiser, 2015). The state has 39 hospitals identified as Critical Access Hospitals (Flex Team, 7/2017). There are 118 Rural Health Clinics in Washington (CMS, 2017) and 28 Federally Qualified Health Centers provide services at 291 sites in the state (NACHC, 2015).

Selected Social Determinants of Health for Rural Washington

7% of Washington residents lack health insurance (Kaiser, 2015). According to the USDA Economic Research Service, the average per-capita income for Washingtonians in 2015 was $51,898, although rural per-capita income lagged at $40,267. The ERS reports, based on 2016 ACS data, that the poverty rate in rural Washington is 16.4%, compared with 10.7% in urban areas of the state. 12.0% of the rural population has not completed high school, while 9.3% of the urban population lacks a high school diploma according to 2011-2015 ACS data reported by ERS. The unemployment rate in rural Washington is 7.2%, while in urban Washington it is 5.3% (USDA-ERS, 2016).

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

Data Sources
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; Washington Office of Community and Rural Health; Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services: Rural Health Clinic List


Washington State Office of Community and Rural Health
Phone: 360.236.2805
Helps rural and underserved communities have access to health services. Administers grant programs, finds doctors, and connects health care professionals with clinics and hospitals.
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There are more organizations related to Washington in the organizations section.

Last Reviewed: 12/30/2016