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Rural Hospitals – News

News stories from the past 60 days.

Nov 18, 2021 - Describes efforts to prevent rural Mississippi hospital closures and re-open rural hospitals through partnerships with other hospitals. Addresses financial challenges related to reimbursement issues and staffing costs and highlights the importance of emergency care access for rural communities.
Source: Mississippi Today
Nov 16, 2021 - Notice of final rule with comment period from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) revising the Medicare Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS) and Medicare Ambulatory Surgical Center (ACS) payment system for calendar year 2022, updates and refines the requirements for the Hospital Outpatient Quality Reporting (OQR) Program and the ASC Quality Reporting (ASCQR) Program, updates Hospital Price Transparency requirements, and updates and refines the design of the Radiation Oncology Model. Comments on the final rule are due by December 2, 2021. The final rule is effective January 1, 2022.
Source: Federal Register
Oct 21, 2021 - Discusses the traveling nurse workforce and the benefits and challenges for rural hospitals that hire temporary staff. Describes the financial impacts of nursing staff and recruitment efforts in rural areas.
Source: The Daily Yonder
Oct 20, 2021 - Examines the potential impacts of health insurers phasing out cost-sharing for COVID-19 patient hospital stays, discussing the trend early in the pandemic for insurers to waive out-of-pocket costs. Notes that with this change, patients could be expected to pay their out-of-pocket costs for COVID-19 stays and discusses the potential impact of this on rural hospitals.
Source: The Daily Yonder
Oct 19, 2021 - Describes a study of family physicians in rural maternity care that found that in 185 rural hospitals in 10 states, 67% had family physicians deliver babies and in 27% of the hospitals they were the only physicians who delivered babies. Discusses issues of access to maternal care if family physicians leave or are not employed at rural hospitals, highlighting the need for specialized training programs to support the rural workforce.
Source: Medical Xpress
Oct 14, 2021 - The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is seeking comment on the following information collections: 1) Independent Rural Health Clinic Cost Report; 2) Bid Pricing Tool (BPT) for Medicare Advantage (MA) Plans and Prescription Drug Plans (PDP); and 3) Implementation of Medicare and Medicaid Programs;—Promoting Interoperability Programs (Stage 3) (CMS-10552). Comments are due by December 13, 2021.
Source: Federal Register
Oct 7, 2021 - Notice from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) seeking comment on revised draft guidance that, when finalized, will describe how FDA intends to apply certain provisions of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) to human drug products compounded by State-licensed pharmacies that are not outsourcing facilities and distributed for use within a hospital or health system. The draft guidance addresses the requirement that compounding be based on the receipt of a valid prescription order for an identified individual patient and the provision concerning compounded drug products that are essentially copies of a commercially available drug product. Comments are due by December 6, 2021.
Source: Federal Register
Oct 5, 2021 - The Health Resources and Services Administration will hold a virtual public meeting of the National Advisory Committee on Rural Health and Human Services (NACRHHS) on October 25-27, 2021. The agenda will include discussions on Behavioral Health and Primary Care Integration in Rural America and recommendations to the Secretary of Health and Human Services on the Rural Emergency Hospital designation. Pre-registration is required by October 24, 2021. Written statements and request to make oral comments should be submitted to Steven Hirsch at least 3 business days prior to the meeting.
Source: Federal Register
Oct 5, 2021 - Describes a study of 172 rural hospitals that merged with larger health systems from 2009-2016, comparing them to 549 independent hospitals and finding that the number of acquired hospitals that offered any maternal or neonatal services decreased. Also notes that merged hospitals were less likely to offer surgical services and mental health services.
Source: The Rural Blog

Last Updated: 11/18/2021