Rural Health & Human Services
Top Stories

Top news stories from the past 60 days.

Obamacare Takes Root in Appalachia, to Mixed Reviews
Apr 17, 2015 - One year after its implementation, people in the Appalachian Region are sharing how Obamacare has changed their ability to access healthcare services.
Source: USA Today and The (Louisville) Courier Journal
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New Funding Opportunities for Job-Driven Training Programs in Health Care
Apr 16, 2015 - The Administration for Children and Families announces funding for two Health Profession Opportunity programs, one serving TANF Recipients and other low-income individuals, and the other targeted to tribal organizations. Both programs provide eligible candidates an opportunity to obtain education and training for high-demand healthcare occupations.
Source: Administration for Children and Families
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Secretary’s Award for Healthy Homes
Apr 16, 2015 - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and National Environmental Health Association are accepting nominations for the first annual Secretary’s Award for Healthy Homes. The awards will recognize programs that are open to low and/or moderate income families and show measurable benefits in the health of residents. Applications are due April 30, 2015.
Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
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Healthy, Resilient, and Sustainable Communities After Disasters: Strategies, Opportunities, and Planning for Recovery
Apr 16, 2015 - The Institute of Medicine has released a report outlining how a community can use the disaster recovery process as an opportunity to improve health and human service delivery systems in their community, thus creating healthier and more resilient communities that are better prepared for future challenges.
Source: Institute of Medicine
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Alabama's Health Care Crisis: Task Force Looks to Lower Costs, Expand Services in Rural Areas
Apr 16, 2015 - Describes the efforts of the Alabama Health Care Improvement Task Force to find ways to make healthcare more accessible and affordable to the state's most rural and underserved residents.
Source: Alabama Media Group
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CMS Releases First Ever Hospital Compare Star Ratings
Apr 16, 2015 - CMS has released the first comparison ratings on Hospital Compare. The star ratings are based on data from the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Survey (HCAHPS), which measures patient perceptions of hospital staff communication and responsiveness, and hospital cleanliness, among other things.
Source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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CMS: Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Electronic Health Record Incentive Program-Modifications to Meaningful Use in 2015 Through 2017; Proposed Rule Federal Register
Apr 15, 2015 - CMS proposed rule would change the Electronic Health Record Incentive Program reporting period in 2015-2016, remove redundant and duplicative reporting requirements, and modifies required patient engagement actions.
Source: Federal Register
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Federal Appeals Court Throws out Rural Hospital Suit
Apr 15, 2015 - Reports that District of Columbia Circuit Court has ruled in favor of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in a lawsuit brought by 60 rural hospitals. The hospitals claimed that reimbursement calculations performed by HHS were unfairly applied.
Source: Fierce Health Finance
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CMS Announces Opportunity to Apply for Navigator Grants in Federally-facilitated and State Partnership Marketplaces
Apr 15, 2015 - Announces funding to support Navigators in Federally-facilitated Marketplaces, including State Partnership Marketplaces. Navigators are organizations and individuals that provide objective information about, and assist consumers with enrolling in, qualified health plans.
Source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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Proposed Fiscal Year 2016 Payment and Policy Changes for Medicare Skilled Nursing Facilities
Apr 15, 2015 - CMS has issued a proposed rule outlining proposed Medicare payment rates for skilled nursing facilities for fiscal year 2016. Includes a summary of the proposed changes, which have continued emphasis on shifting payments from volume to value-based.
Source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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Senate Approves Bill To Change The Way Medicare Pays Doctors
Apr 15, 2015 - Kaiser Health News brings together a number of stories on the Senate's approval of the bill that will repeal the current Medicare physician payment formula. The new formula includes an Medicare physician payment increase of .5% each year through 2019, and rewards physicians that meet certain quality measures.
Source: Kaiser Health News
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HHS Announces $1 Million in New Grant Programs to Help Improve Sharing of Health Information
Apr 15, 2015 - Announces funding for the Community Interoperability Health Information Exchange Program to enable communities to work together to use health information technology tools and services to improve the health of the community.
Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
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As Rural Hospitals Close and Strokes Increase, Focus Turns to Ambulances
Apr 14, 2015 - As more rural hospitals close, concern about access to care is rising in areas of the country that experience unusually high rates of stroke. One community in Maine is looking at ways to improve services, through incorporating telemedicine into their ambulance services and establishing a community paramedicine program.
Source: Healthcare Finance
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iVantage Study Reveals Rural Hospitals in the US Face Vulnerability but Deliver High Value to Rural Communities Nationwide
Apr 14, 2015 - iVantage Health Analytics and the National Rural Health Association released the 2015 Rural Relevance Study: Vulnerability to Value report which examined rural hospital closures and risk of closures. The report also notes that rural hospitals demonstrated high value in areas of quality, patient satisfaction, and efficiency.
Source: iVantage Health Analytics
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Job Loss Returns to Rural U.S.
Apr 14, 2015 - Provides an analysis of data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showing that nonmetropolitan counties have lost over 300,000 jobs from January 2014 to January 2015, while metropolitan counties have gained over 3 million jobs during the same period. Includes an interactive map showing county-level employment data.
Source: The Daily Yonder
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Medicare ‘Doc Fix’ Gaining Senate Momentum
Apr 14, 2015 - Kaiser Health News pulls together a number of stories on how the Senate is working to limit the number of amendments each party is allowed to attach to the Sustainable Growth Rate repeal bill.
Source: Kaiser Health News
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VA Extends Program for Veterans with Traumatic Brain Injury
Apr 13, 2015 - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has announced awards for the Assisted Living Pilot Program for Veterans with Traumatic Brain Injury (AL-TBI). The program, which allows eligible veterans to be placed in private sector TBI care facilities, has been extended by the Veterans Choice Act through October 2017.
Source: U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
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Opportunity for All: White House Rural Council Launches “Rural Impact” Effort to Help Rural Children and Families Succeed
Apr 13, 2015 - Introduces a new White House Rural Council initiative, Rural Impact, designed to address child poverty by bringing together public and private resources to invest in rural communities.
Source: White House Rural Council
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Alaska Governor: Medicaid Reform Without Expansion Unacceptable
Apr 13, 2015 - Reports that Alaska Governor Bill Walker is holding strong to his belief that the state should not reform their Medicaid program without expanding eligibility at the same time.
Source: Associated Press via Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (AK)
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Prevalence of Major Depression Lower Among African-American Women in Rural Areas
Apr 9, 2015 - Describes recent research finding that the prevalence of major depression may be influenced by whether or not a person lives in a rural area. Finds this influence may be positive or negative depending on a person's race.
Source: Medical News Today
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VA Makes Little Headway in Fight to Shorten Waits for Care
Apr 9, 2015 - Reports that little progress has been made in addressing long wait times for veterans seeking care from the Department of Veterans Affairs. Highlights geographic disparities for rural veterans, who often face the longest delays.
Source: Associated Press via Pioneer Press
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Federal Office of Rural Health Policy Funding Announcement: Rural Opioid Overdose Reversal Grant Program (ROOR)
Apr 9, 2015 - The Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP) announces the release of the Rural Opioid Overdose Reversal Grant Program (ROOR) to fund efforts that will focus on preventing opioid overdose in rural areas.
Source: Federal Office of Rural Health Policy
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Obstetrics a Money-Losing Challenge for Rural Hospitals
Apr 8, 2015 - Describes financial pressures for small and rural hospitals to drop expensive obstetric services despite a persistent need for them.
Source: HealthLeaders Media
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Alliance Brings the Latest Cancer Treatments to Rural Kansas
Apr 8, 2015 - Describes a partnership developed by the University of Kansas Cancer Center to bring cancer treatment closer to home for rural Kansans. The partnership allows small cancer centers to provide their patients access to clinical trials without requiring them to travel to large academic centers where the trials typically take place.
Source: Kansas Health Institute
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Top Five Reasons Why the Swing Bed Program is Vital to the Long-Term Viability for Critical Access Hospitals and Rural Healthcare
Apr 8, 2015 - Blog entry by the National Rural Health Resource Center highlights why the swing bed program is important to rural healthcare.
Source: National Rural Health Resource Center
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Funding to Improve Health In Rural North Carolina Communities: When Buzzwords Meet Change
Apr 7, 2015 - This opinion piece from Allen Smart, Vice President of Programs at the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust, describes the role of philanthropy in addressing rural healthcare needs in North Carolina.
Source: Health Affairs GrantWatch Blog
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NRHA Announces 2015 Rural Health Award Recipients
Apr 6, 2015 - The National Rural Health Association (NRHA) has announced the 2015 Rural Health Award recipients to be recognized at NRHA's 38th Annual Rural Health Conference.
Source: National Rural Health Association
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Smallest Counties Lose Population -- Again
Apr 6, 2015 - Describes a trend of population loss in rural counties across the country, attributing the loss to lower birth rates in rural areas.
Source: The Daily Yonder
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Native Americans Living in Tribal Areas Face Longer Trips to the Grocery Store
Apr 6, 2015 - Summarizes findings from a recent Economic Research Service study that looked at distance from a major grocery store for Native Americans living in tribal areas, compared to the U.S. population as a whole.
Source: Amber Waves
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The State Of Rural Hospitals
Apr 6, 2015 - Maggie Elehwany, National Rural Health Association, and Tim Size, Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative, discuss the unique challenges that rural hospitals across the country and in Wisconsin are facing today. (Audio)
Source: Wisconsin Public Radio
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CMS Finalizes 2016 Payment and Policy Updates for Medicare Health and Drug Plans
Apr 6, 2015 - The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released the final payment changes for the Medicare Advantage and Part D Prescription Drug programs.
Source: Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
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Study: Minimum-Distance Requirements Could Harm CAHs, Rural Communities
Apr 6, 2015 - Highlights a study that identifies the negative impacts of enforcing a minimum-distance regulation on Critical Access Hospital locations.
Source: American Hospital Association
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Research Connection Could Help Answer Questions About Rural Cancer
Apr 5, 2015 - Illustrates the burden of geographic distance for rural residents seeking cancer treatment. Explains that although rural residents with cancer have a higher death rate, they are underrepresented in research studies for the same reason of long distances that exist as a barrier to healthcare. To address this research disparity between rural and urban, the University of Nebraska Medical Center has created the Breast Cancer Collaborative Registry.
Source: Harvest Public Media
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HRSA: Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection: Public Comment Request Federal Register
Apr 3, 2015 - The Health Resources and Services Administration is requesting comments, primarily from state Primary Care Offices, concerning data that must be submitted to apply for a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) or a Medically Underserved Area/Population designation.
Source: Federal Register
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VA: Notice of Meeting
Apr 2, 2015 - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has announced a meeting of the Veterans Rural Health Advisory Committee. This committee advises the Secretary of Veterans Affairs on healthcare issues affecting enrolled veterans who reside in rural areas.
Source: Federal Register
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Rural Food Deserts
Apr 1, 2015 - Reports on a trend of grocery store closures in small, rural communities which is leading to a growing number of food deserts. Describes how these closures negatively impact a community's vibrancy, lead to a lack of healthy food options, and create a public health concern.
Source: WUIS
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CMS Delays Enforcement of 'Two Midnights' Rule for Another Month
Apr 1, 2015 - The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will delay enforcement of a payment policy for short hospital stays. Congress is considering repealing the sustainable growth rate bill, which includes a six-month delay in enforcement of this rule.
Source: Modern Healthcare
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Recruitment Ongoing Challenge for Rural Ambulance Services
Apr 1, 2015 - Describes the challenges of recruiting volunteer emergency medical technicians within rural communities, forcing leaders to rethink their approach. Highlights this issue in Northwestern Minnesota and North Dakota while making clear that this problem is affecting communities across the country.
Source: Grand Forks Herald
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Closing The Rural Health Connectivity Gap: How Broadband Funding Can Better Improve Care
Apr 1, 2015 - Describes the importance of broadband access in improving healthcare outcomes and lowering costs of healthcare, especially in rural areas. Makes recommendations to improve broadband connectivity in rural areas.
Source: Health Affairs Blog
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House of Representatives' 'Doc Fix' Bill Benefits Rural Hospitals
Mar 31, 2015 - Describes how the Rural Hospitals Access Act, nicknamed the "Doc Fix" bill, will help rural hospitals. Highlights the impacts on specific rural healthcare facilities in New York.
Source: Wellsville Daily Reporter
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Community Health Maps Survey
Mar 31, 2015 - Community organizations, including those serving rural communities, are invited to respond to a survey about online mapping tools. Survey responses will help improve Community Health Maps, an initiative to assist community organizations in identifying and using low-cost, easy-to-use online mapping tools.
Source: National Library of Medicine
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Health Care Workers Hard to Lure to Santa Cruz County
Mar 31, 2015 - Describes the challenges to attracting healthcare workers to rural areas such as Santa Cruz County, Arizona, which is highlighted in this article.
Source: Nogales International
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Rural Providers Will Need to Keep Pace with New Delivery Models
Mar 30, 2015 - Recaps a webinar given by Lynn Barr of the National Rural Accountable Care Consortium discussing the importance of rural healthcare providers' involvement in Accountable Care Organizations and the associated data reporting before being mandated to participate.
Source: Healio
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New Bill Improves Rural Maternity Care
Mar 30, 2015 - Describes a new, bipartisan bill introduced aimed to reduce prenatal provider shortages in rural and underserved communities to ensure access to timely and high quality maternity care.
Source: News Democrat
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Ky. Rural Hospitals Get Poor Bill of Health
Mar 30, 2015 - Describes a report recently released by the State Auditor of Kentucky that assessed the financial strength of the state's rural hospitals. Finds that the majority of Kentucky's rural hospitals rank below the national average in financial strength.
Source: The Courier-Journal
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CMS: Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Electronic Health Record Incentive Program - Stage 3 Federal Register
Mar 30, 2015 - This proposed rule specifies Stage 3 meaningful use criteria that eligible professionals and facilities must meet to qualify for incentive payments and avoid penalties. Includes rural specific criteria.
Source: Federal Register
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Senate Postpones Action on 'Doc Fix' for Two Weeks
Mar 27, 2015 - Reports on Congress' progress towards a permanent solution to the Sustainable Growth Rate formula that is due to expire on April 1. After passing the House, this article highlights the Senate's optimism to pass the 'Doc Fix' when they return from a two week recess.
Source: USA Today
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Indiana Is Battling the Worst HIV Outbreak in Its History
Mar 26, 2015 - Reports the greatest HIV outbreak in Indiana state history, citing its origin in the rural community of Austin, Indiana. Also highlights the burden of the outbreak on the only doctor's office located in Austin. Ties the outbreak to poverty and needle sharing by drug users.
Source: The Washington Post
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In-School Clinics Provide Better Healthcare for Students and the Community
Mar 25, 2015 - Describes the benefits to providing oral health services in schools, especially those located in rural areas, through the experience of Valley Middle School in House Springs, Missouri.
Source: Mid-Missouri Public Radio
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Some Farmers Warming to the Affordable Care Act
Mar 25, 2015 - Discusses both positive and negative perceptions of the Affordable Care Act held by rural farmers.
Source: Kansas Health Institute
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House Calls: What to Do When Your Patients Are Snowed In
Mar 24, 2015 - This article provides a personal reflection of a physician practicing in Clay County, West Virginia, and the realities of rural healthcare provision. Describes how snow can make healthcare access very difficult and create an environment for worsening health conditions during winter months.
Source: The American Academy of Family Physicians
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Status of GAO Recommendations to Improve 340B Drug Pricing Program Oversight
Mar 24, 2015 - The U.S. Government Accountability Office has released a report finding that the Health Resources and Services Administration's (HRSA) oversight of the 340B program was inadequate. The report includes recommendations made to HRSA to ensure appropriate use of the program.
Source: The U.S. Government Accountability Office
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VA Works to Expand Choice Program Eligibility
Mar 24, 2015 - The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has announced a change to the distance calculation used to determine a veteran's eligibility in the Veterans Choice Program.
Source: U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
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Study: Rural Hospitals Work Hard to Provide Maternity Care but Face Significant Staffing and Training Challenges
Mar 23, 2015 - Describes a study that found challenges to staffing and training of obstetric workforce in rural areas across the country. Provides key findings from the study outlining the challenges.
Source: University of Minnesota School of Public Health
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UM Teams Develop New Ideas to Improve Rural Health Care
Mar 22, 2015 - Recaps a first-of-a-kind event meant to spark innovation in rural healthcare called Hacking Rural Medicine. This rural medicine "hackathon" had teams of medical professionals develop ideas for a new tool or product to help solve healthcare gaps in rural areas.
Source: Associated Press via The Montana Standard
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Rural Hospitals Struggle to Keep Their Doors Open
Mar 20, 2015 - Describes the financial challenges rural hospitals are facing and the impact of hospital closures on the rural communities that are home to these facilities. Highlights the impact on residents of Guthrie and Paducah, Texas, where a local hospital recently closed, leaving people with less access to health services.
Source: The Texas Tribune in partnership with Kaiser Health News
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Why Rural Health Matters
Mar 19, 2015 - Provides an overview of the unique characteristics of rural healthcare and the importance of it for rural residents. Recaps the messages of key speakers at the National Rural Health Association's Rural Health Policy Institute.
Source: Altarum Institute
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USDA Partners with University of Kentucky to Establish National Rural Child Poverty Nutrition Center
Mar 19, 2015 - The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced that it will partner with the University of Kentucky in Lexington to establish the USDA Rural Child Poverty Nutrition Center. The Center will use cutting-edge solutions to reduce food insecurity in poor, rural counties across the country.
Source: The U.S. Department of Agriculture
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KU Studying Obesity Treatment for Rural Kansans
Mar 19, 2015 - Highlights a new study reporting that people living in rural areas are more likely to be obese than city dwellers. Lists contributing factors such as nutritional diet, exercise, culture, and a lack of resources and infrastructure supporting health and wellness. This article announces the start of a 5 year, nationwide study to further investigate obesity in rural areas.
Source: Pratt Tribune
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Telehealth Legislation Heats Up Nationwide
Mar 19, 2015 - Lists state efforts across the country to legislate telehealth related bills.
Source: mHealth Intelligence
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'Health Begins Outside the Doctor's Office,' Says Former Surgeon General and UAB Grad
Mar 18, 2015 - Shares the opinion of a former Surgeon General on the importance of prevention in addressing health disparities. Submits that high rates of poverty and dropout rates directly contribute to health outcomes in rural areas, which report some of the worst health problems in the country.
Source: Alabama Media Group
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‘We Can’t Help You’: The Message To Rural Vets About Health Care
Mar 17, 2015 - Highlights challenges to implementing the Veterans Choice Program which is aimed to improve access to healthcare for rural veterans.
Source: KUOW Puget Sound Public Radio
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FORHP Hosts Webinar on AIM, a Medicare ACO Model for Rural Providers
Mar 17, 2015 - On April 2nd, the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy will host a webinar on the ACO Investment Model, which encourages uptake of ACOs in rural areas by offering shared savings prepayments and per beneficiary per month payments.
Source: Federal Office of Rural Health Policy
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Disparities in Health Care Felt on Reservations
Mar 16, 2015 - Dr. Donald Warne highlights health disparities that exist within the Native American population, often located in rural areas. The article also highlights uses of technology to address these health disparities.
Source: Tri-State Neighbor
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Why Is The Risk Of Youth Suicide Higher In Rural Areas?
Mar 15, 2015 - Interviews Dr. Sandra Micken, a Montana psychologist, about a recent publication concluding that rural young people are nearly twice as likely as their urban counterparts to commit suicide.
Source: National Public Radio
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Rural Hospitals, Beset by Financial Problems, Struggle to Survive
Mar 15, 2015 - Describes the financial challenges that rural hospitals are facing across the country by telling the story of a rural hospital closure in Mount Vernon, Texas. Highlights the impact that sequestration, reductions in special Medicaid payments, and high health insurance deductibles have had on rural healthcare access.
Source: The Washington Post
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Unconventional Success
Mar 15, 2015 - Describes the unique success of a partnership between two Critical Access Hospitals and several outreach clinics that provide specialty services to a rural region in Iowa which has brought financial stability to both facilities and their communities.
Source: The Globe Gazette
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Medicare Payment Advisory Commission Releases Report on Medicare Payment Policy
Mar 13, 2015 - The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) has released its annual review of Medicare payment policies. This press release announces the report's release and includes recommendations to Congress made in the report.
Source: Medicare Payment Advisory Commission
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CMS Expands Telehealth Coverage Under New ACO Model
Mar 13, 2015 - The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced on March 10th its new Next Generation Accountable Care Organization (ACO) model. This article discusses the new model and how it is allowing ACOs to use telehealth services, extending coverage for telemedicine service to many more Medicare beneficiaries.
Source: Health Data Management
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HRSA Chief Wakefield Appointed Acting HHS Deputy Secretary
Mar 13, 2015 - Reports that one of the country's leading rural health advocates, Dr. Mary Wakefield, has been appointed as acting deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (May require registration for full article)
Source: Modern Healthcare
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Reactions to Recent OIG Swing Bed Report
Mar 12, 2015 - On Monday the Office of the Inspector General, Department of Health and Human Services, released a report recommending a reduction in swing-bed reimbursement for Critical Access Hospitals. This story lists reactions to the report.
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Cradle of Shame
Mar 12, 2015 - A multi-part investigative story that describes the infant mortality rate disparity across the state of South Carolina with the highest rates of infant mortality found in rural areas. Part three highlights the need for access to OB/GYN services in rural areas.
Source: The Post and Courier
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Telehealth Promises to Reshape Health Care
Mar 10, 2015 - Discusses the potential for telehealth services to increase healthcare access and convenience as well as improve healthcare quality and patient satisfaction for urban and rural residents.
Source: Hospitals & Health Networks
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Next Generation Accountable Care Organization (ACO) Model Fact Sheet
Mar 10, 2015 - The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has announced an addition to their Accountable Care Organization (ACO) portfolio, its Next Generation Accountable Care Organization Model. This press release highlights its intent for experienced ACOs in coordinating care that allows for higher levels of risk and reward.
Source: The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
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2015 National Health Service Corp Scholarship Program Application Cycle Now Open
Mar 10, 2015 - The 2015 National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Scholarship Program application cycle is now open. The application cycle will remain open through May 7, 2015. Applicants are encouraged to begin the application process early as on average it takes up to 3 weeks to complete the application.
Source: National Health Service Corps
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Rural OB/GYN Recruitment Strategy Emphasizes Benefits
Mar 9, 2015 - Describes the lack of access to obstetricians and gynecologists in rural areas. Offers some promising incentives and advice to help recruit and retain OB/GYN professionals.
Source: HealthLeaders Media
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Young Adult And Teen Suicide Rates Nearly Double In Rural Areas Compared To Urban Areas
Mar 9, 2015 - Highlights a study that finds the rates of suicide among teens and young-adults were nearly double in rural areas compared to their urban counterparts. Suggests using school-based mental health interventions through the use of telemental health services to help address the disparity.
Source: Medical Daily
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Report: Rural Hospitals Get Billions in Extra Medicare Funds
Mar 9, 2015 - Describes a recent report released by the Office of the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services that identified potential cost savings related to Critical Access Hospitals' use of swing-bed services. Highlights key findings of the report and some initial reactions to it.
Source: Associated Press via The New York Times
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Health Care for Veterans Goes High Tech
Mar 8, 2015 - Profiles new, technology based approaches to providing mental health services to veterans. Highlights 'Give an Hour', a non-profit that provides veterans and their families access to free mental-health services through video sessions with a network of volunteers.
Source: The Washington Post
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A Hospital's Main Strategy - Survival
Mar 6, 2015 - Highlights the financial pressures on both urban and rural hospitals in Georgia. Survival has become the main focus of many hospitals, especially in rural communities with 4 of the 5 Georgian hospitals closures since 2013 being rural facilities.
Source: Georgia Health News
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HRSA: Advisory Committee on Interdisciplinary, Community-Based Linkages, Notice for Request for Nominations Federal Register
Mar 6, 2015 - The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is seeking nominations for the Advisory Committee on Interdisciplinary, Community-Based Linkages (ACICBL). HRSA has a stated special interest in balancing professionals from both urban and rural areas on this committee.
Source: Federal Register
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LGBT People in Rural Areas Struggle to Find Good Medical Care
Mar 5, 2015 - Discusses the lack of legal structure, healthcare access, and general physician knowledge to support the needs of the LGBT community living in rural areas, with a focus on Nebraska.
Source: CNN
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Practicing Rural Health Care Right Here at Home
Mar 5, 2015 - Describes the efforts of a residency program in Hendersonville, North Carolina, that is preparing primary care physicians to serve in rural parts of the state. Highlights the challenges, opportunities, and lessons learned in addressing primary care workforce shortages.
Source: North Carolina Health News
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MIT Rural Health Care 'Hackathon' on Agenda in Missoula
Mar 4, 2015 - Describes what a 'hackathon' is and why the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is sending a team to Missoula, Montana to facilitate it. Outlines the event, speakers, and its aim to solve rural health challenges.
Source: The Missoulian
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Federal Primary-Care Program for Underserved Areas is at Risk Despite Successes
Mar 3, 2015 - Highlights the impact of not funding the Teaching Health Centers (THC) program, which will happen if Congress does not extend support, on underserved and rural areas that rely on the program as a supply of primary care doctors.
Source: Modern Healthcare
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Sen. Moran Introduces Bill to Support Rural Hospitals
Mar 2, 2015 - Describes a recently introduced Senate bill aiming to extend the Rural Community Hospital Demonstration for five years. A companion bill was introduced in the House last month.
Source: Office of U.S. Senator Moran
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Tom Vilsack Announces Projects To Fight Child Hunger
Mar 2, 2015 - Describes a new funding initiative from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to support five rural demonstration projects to address child poverty and hunger.
Source: Huffington Post
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When Health Care Is Far From Home
Mar 2, 2015 - Describes the plight of rural Hayfork, California after years of population loss and the eventual closures of the only clinic and pharmacy for miles around. Includes perspectives from local residents on how less access to healthcare has affected their quality of life.
Source: Kaiser Health News
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Lawmakers Press Veterans Affairs for Improved Access to Rural Health Care
Mar 1, 2015 - Describes efforts by lawmakers pushing the Department of Veterans Affairs to expand access to healthcare for veterans through broader interpretation of the eligibility requirements of the Veterans Choice Act.
Source: Trib Total Media
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CMS: Health Insurance Marketplace, Medicare, Medicaid, and Children's Health Insurance Programs; Renewal of the Advisory Panel on Outreach and Education (APOE) and Request for Nominations Federal Register
Feb 27, 2015 - Announces the renewal of the Advisory Panel on Outreach and Education (APOE) and seeks nominations to serve on the panel from a variety of fields, including a critical need for those with expertise in rural health, behavioral health, aging, tribal affairs, and more.
Source: Federal Register
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King v. Burwell: What a Subsidy Shutdown Could Mean for Health Care Providers
Feb 26, 2015 - Outlines what the King v. Burwell Supreme Court ruling could mean for healthcare providers, with special consideration concerning rural healthcare providers and rural health facilities.
Source: The Commonwealth Fund
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House Subcommittees Hold Hearings on FY 2016 HHS Budget
Feb 26, 2015 - Describes a meeting of U.S. House of Representative Committee on Appropriations in which the president's fiscal year 2016 budget for the Department of Health and Human Services was discussed. Highlights conversation around a proposed cut of Critical Access Hospital (CAH) funding and elimination of the CAH status for some rural hospitals.
Source: American Hospital Association
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Congress Urged to Protect Hospital Care
Feb 26, 2015 - Reports efforts of hospital leaders urging members of Congress to consider their needs. Briefly mentions the impacts of some legislative changes on Critical Access Hospitals and other rural facilities.
Source: American Hospital Association
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Mississippi Emerges as Leader in Telemedicine
Feb 26, 2015 - Reports Mississippi's success in becoming a leader in telehealth service provision. Highlights the impact telemedicine services are having on rural healthcare facilities.
Source: Politico
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Four Rural Hospitals in High-Tech Pilot Program
Feb 24, 2015 - Provides more details to Georgia Governor Deal's rural health reform plan, including identification of four hospitals that will serve as the 'hubs' in a 'hub and spoke' system. Explains the relationship these 'hub' facilities will have with other rural healthcare facilities, prioritizing a reliance on telehealth technologies.
Source: The Telegraph
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New Online Resource Showcases the Historic Legacy of Community Health Centers
Feb 23, 2015 - Announces a new online resource celebrating 50 years since the implementation of Community Health Centers across the United States. Features a video, interactive timeline, and infographics telling the history and legacy of the program.
Source: The National Association of Community Health Centers
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Helmsley Trust Boosts American Indian Public Health Program
Feb 23, 2015 - A gift from the Helmsley Charitable Trust and the state of North Dakota has created more scholarship opportunities for students enrolled in the North Dakota Master of Public Health program at the North Dakota State University. The program is touted as the only program in the country designed specifically to prepare graduates to work with public health for Native American populations.
Source: Sun Herald
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Nathan Deal’s Plan to Save Struggling Rural Hospitals
Feb 23, 2015 - Describes a recently released report from Georgia's Office of the Governor which calls for a new rural healthcare structure to help stabilize hospitals under stress. It includes recommendations for a "hub and spoke" model and to expand the scope of work for nurse practitioners and physician assistants.
Source: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
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With Rural Doctors in Short Supply, Minnesota Lawmakers Consider More Financial Incentives
Feb 20, 2015 - Among consideration to expand state funding for loan repayment for recent graduates, this article highlights the advantages of financial incentives for newly graduated physicians to practice in rural areas throughout Minnesota from the perspective of both the physician and the law makers.
Source: Star Tribune
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Hospital Leaders Urge Congress to Protect Rural Health Care
Feb 19, 2015 - Highlights a message from rural hospital leaders urging congress to protect their small and rural hospitals during the American Hospital Association's Rural Healthcare Leadership Conference.
Source: American Hospital Association
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Telehealth Could Help Poor, Rural Counties like Hancock
Feb 19, 2015 - Discusses the capabilities of telehealth services in extending access and improving quality of care in rural communities in Georgia.
Source: The Telegraph
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Rural Hospitals Shutting Down at Alarming Rates
Feb 18, 2015 - A video report that interviews the people most affected by rural hospital closures in Georgia to highlight the severity of and the reasons for the problem. Discusses some solutions at both the state and local levels that are currently being exercised.
Source: Al Jazeera America
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HUD Announces More than $650 Million in Indian Housing Block Grants
Feb 18, 2015 - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has announced $651 million to 586 Native American tribes through the Indian Housing Block Grant (IHBG). Lists the recipients and explains the aims of the program.
Source: The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
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Rural, Safety Net Hospital Advocates Join Drug Pricing Fray
Feb 18, 2015 - Describes an ongoing discussion around some rural hospitals' and cancer hospitals' inclusion in the 340B pharmaceutical program and the addition of advocates for rural, safety net hospitals to those voicing their opinion on the issue.
Source: HealthLeaders Media
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Stanford Study Shows Rural Disadvantages Under Obamacare
Feb 18, 2015 - Summarizes findings of a recent Standford study that concludes rural residents have fewer and more expensive choices through health insurance markets made available through the Affordable Care Act.
Source: Stanford News Service
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Reed Wants Rural Hospital Funding Made Permanent
Feb 17, 2015 - Reports U.S Representative Tom Reed's support for two key federal programs that help rural hospitals and his opinion to permanently fund them. Describes the benefits to establishing permanent funding for both the Medicare Dependent and Low-Volume Hospital programs.
Source: The Leader
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