NRHA's Rural Health Voices blog offers informed commentary on the latest news in rural health care from NRHA staff and editorials from selected contributors.

Senate Finance Committee Holds Hearing to Discuss Rural Health Policy

The National Rural Health Association (NRHA) applauds the Senate Finance Committee for holding a powerful hearing today discussing the state of health care in rural America. The hearing, entitled “Rural Health Care in America: Challenges and Opportunities,” focused on the difficulties providers face in rural communities, as well as the innovative ways in which they are working to ensure continued local care. As Senate Rural Health Caucus Co-Chair Pat Roberts said, this hearing is ...

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Senate Finance Announces Rural Health Hearing on May 24

NRHA is excited to share that the Senate Finance Committee will hold a hearing discussing the state of health care in rural America next week. The hearing, entitled “Rural Health Care in America: Challenges and Opportunities,” will focus on the difficulties providers face in rural communities, as well as the innovative ways in which they are working to ensure continued local care.  

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Preventing unnecessary CEO turnover in rural and critical access hospitals

In many rural communities today, hospital CEO turnover rates are exceeding 20 percent. The exact cause for such a high rate is unknown, but it is certain that the overall health of rural communities is jeopardized. State and local health organizations, community leaders, and health care board members are becoming deeply concerned. In a national study, Yaffe and Company is seeking the opinions of current and prior CEOs and board leadership, as we search for causes and solutions.

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USDA Opioid Misuse Roundtable Reaffirms Importance of ‘Community’ Solutions

NRHA Member and Administrative Director for Education and Research at St. Claire HealthCare (Morehead, Kentucky) discusses his work combatting the opioid crisis in his home state and his recent experience participating in a USDA Rural Development Opioid Crisis Roundtable. 

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CMS Releases Rural Health Strategy

We are excited to have CMS announce the agency’s first Rural Health Strategy during our Annual Conference this week in New Orleans.

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Leveraging Business Intelligence in the CAH Setting

With the advent of big data, and health care reform driving organizations to be more efficient and cost effective, business intelligence has become an increasingly popular way to harness the power of data analytics and process improvement. Most critical access hospital management and governing boards would agree that operational data is necessary in today’s environment. Getting to the next level of this discussion, however, is a bit more complicated.   

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From Refugee to Registered Nurse

Dawit Gebrezghi fled his native country of Eritrea to avoid being forced into military servitude. After living in a refugee camp, he made his way to the U.S. and began working. After overcoming incredible obstacles, Gebrezghi is now celebrating his graduation from Nightingale College as a nurse, and plans to return to the refugee camp to serve as a nurse. “Patients don’t just need medication,” said Gebrezghi. “They need kindness. They need hope.”

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House Agriculture Committee Releases 2018 Farm Bill

Just this afternoon, the House Agriculture Committee Majority Staff released the 2018 Farm Bill, legislation that is required every four years to reauthorize critical programs in agricultural, health, trade, and food policy. There are many programs and opportunities for rural health included in this legislation, and in the months leading up to the release of the legislation, NRHA’s Government Affairs Team met with key staff and other advocacy organizations to ensure the future of these...

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Red Tape Relief: NRHA Participates in Ways and Means Committee Roundtable

Today, NRHA Member Leslie Marsh, joined by NRHA’s Regulatory Counsel Diane Calmus, spoke at a bipartisan roundtable with Members of the House Committee on Ways and Means Health Subcommittee on regulatory relief for rural providers. NRHA was invited to join the small roundtable to present the key regulatory reforms needed to support rural communities and providers and ensure access to care. Entitled, “Red Tape Relief Initiative,” the roundtable provided members of the Ways...

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Opioid Crisis Legislative Update

In rural America, we have seen the devastating effects of the opioid epidemic since the beginning of this crisis. While only 20 percent of Americans live in rural areas, a disproportionate number of rural communities are struggling with prescription opioids and heroin abuse. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, rural Americans are more vulnerable to prescription painkiller abuse and overdoses, and the rate of opioid-related overdose deaths in nonmetro counties is 45...

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