Rural Health Information Hub Latest News

Opioid-Related Hospitalization and Its Association With Chronic Diseases: Findings From the National Inpatient Sample, 2011-2015

This report provides the results of a study examining whether opioid-related hospitalization is associated with cancer, stroke, obesity, asthma, liver or spinal disease, and arthritis. Features demographic statistics with breakdowns by urban or rural location.

Author(s): Janani Rajbhandari-Thapa, Donglan Zhang, Heather M. Padilla, Sae Rom Chung
Location: Preventing Chronic Disease, 16
Date: 11/2019

Poverty Rate of the Population Under 18 by County: 2018

This map of the United States displays the poverty rate for citizens under 18 by county using estimated data produced by statistical model-based methods using sample survey, decennial census, and other administrative data sources from the Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates (SAIPE) Program.

Sponsoring organization: U.S. Census Bureau
Date: 12/2019

Achieving Health Equity in Preventive Services: Evidence Summary

This report summarizes research on achieving health equity in preventive services including screening, counseling, medication, and management for cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes in adult patients by identifying the effects of impediments and barriers that create disparities, and the effectiveness of strategies and interventions to reduce them. Study reports barriers that resulted in, or explained a disparity in preventive service, and the effectiveness of the clinician-patient relationship, health information technology and health system intervention. Studies included African Americans, Hispanics, Korean and Chinese Americans, and rural and low-income patients.  Full Report

Sponsoring organization: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
Date: 12/2019

CRS Report on Broadband Access in Rural Areas

The Congressional Research Service (CRS) provides objective policy and legal analysis to committees and members of the U.S. House and Senate.  For this report, researchers examine the characteristics of demand for fixed broadband in rural areas and how they affect private sector infrastructure investments.  Click here to read the full report.

Rural-Urban Differences in Access to and Attitudes Toward Care for Medicare Beneficiaries

Rural Medicare beneficiaries face particular hurdles in accessing care, including longer distances to health care facilities, lower median incomes, fewer private supplemental and Medicare Advantage plan options, higher disability rates (leading to greater need), and health care workforce shortages. In this brief from the University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center, researchers describe the differences for Medicare beneficiaries in rural and urban areas.  Click here to read the full report.

Now Available: 2020 Eligible Clinician Electronic Clinical Quality Measure Flows

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) developed and published the 2020 performance period electronic clinical quality measure (eCQM) flows for eligible clinicians and eligible professionals to the eCQI Resource Center.  Use these flows as an additional resource when implementing eCQMs. Do not use them in place of the eCQM specification or for reporting purposes.

Direct questions on the eCQM flows to the ONC Project Tracking System eCQM Issue Tracker.

Telehealth: An Opportunity for State and Territorial Health Agencies to Improve Access to Needed Health Services

Through support from our National Organizations of State and Local Officials cooperative agreement, the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) published Telehealth: An Opportunity for State and Territorial Health Agencies to Improve Access to Needed Health Services in the Journal of Public Health Management and Practice.

The article describes the results of a 2019 telehealth survey ASTHO administered to all 59 state and territorial health officials, which assessed the landscape of telehealth activities, priorities, and technical assistance needed within state and territorial health agencies. It then provides strategies states can use, including leveraging partnerships and improving broadband access, to expand access to health care services and enhance population health through telehealth.

Study Finds Only One-Third of States Have Publicly Available Guidelines for Levels of Maternal Care

A recent study led by HRSA staff found differences in the number of states with publicly available guidelines for levels of maternal care, and the number of states incorporating maternal care criteria.

In 2015, the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists developed a classification system for levels of maternal care. They introduced standardized criteria and uniform definitions to enable monitoring of risk-appropriate care and evaluate its impact on health outcomes. However, the current study found that only one-third of states have publically available guidelines that incorporate these criteria for levels of maternal care.

A system of risk-appropriate maternal care may have the largest potential impact on preventing pregnancy-related deaths in the United States. This study highlights the need for further dissemination and implementation of perinatal guidelines to ensure women receive care in facilities that align with their risk.

Read about HRSA’s work to address maternal care. Read the Journal of Women’s Health abstract.