Rural Emergency Hospital
The Consolidated Appropriations Act that was passed in December 2020 included the creation of a new payment/delivery model for rural hospitals…the “Rural Emergency Hospital”. The REH is very similar to the Primary Health Center model developed by the Kansas Hospital Association. The REH is a permanent solution for rural communities and the payment approach is much more rational. The bill states that REHs can start operating in January 2023.
The Primary Health Center is a potential model for communities that can no longer sustain the current health delivery structure. This model was developed by KHA's Rural Health Visioning Task and has been tested on paper. The following resources document work on the model.
To date, KHA has received letters of support from the KHA Board of Directors, Kansas Congressional Delegation, Governor Laura Kelly, KDHE Secretary Lee Norman, Kansas Farm Bureau, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas, and Kansas Association of Counties. Several other organizations also have expressed an interest in offering support for this initiative.
The United Methodist Health Ministry Fund and the Kansas Health Foundation in partnership with the Kansas Hospital Association are hosting community conversations on the future of health and health care in rural Kansas communities. These conversations will focus on ways to preserve Kansans access to the services they need and to helping our rural towns thrive.
Regional stakeholder conversations are currently planned for February and March 2020 (dates below). Visit the community conversation website for more details.
Kansas rural hospitals provide essential health care services to a growing population of rural Medicare beneficiaries. Rural communities depend on hospitals to be there when they need them – to respond swiftly to emergencies, to help patients cope with acute and chronic illness and to care for those who have no place left to turn – 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
The KHA Board recognized the importance of looking to the future to ensure access to health services in rural communities. To carry out that work, a technical advisory group was appointed in 2012. Many of the resources on this page were developed during their tenure.
Scenarios for the Future - Tools for Board Discussions
For more information, contact Jennifer Findley at (785) 233-7436.