Post-acute care (PAC) in rural hospitals, particularly Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs), represents an important source of PAC access in rural areas. In addition, a rural hospital’s financial health often depends on providing services that meet local need. Over time, some changes in Medicare payment policies have adversely affected rural providers. For example, when the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 created the home health prospective payment system, a significant number of rural hospitals ended their home health services. With the increased use of more recent payment models such as Accountable Care Organizations, bundled payments, and value-based arrangements, hospitals’ decision-making around PAC may be changing once again. In this brief, Market Characteristics Associated with Rural Hospitals’ Provision of Post-Acute Care, the NC Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center uses data from Medicare cost reports, the Provider of Services File (POS), and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to provide a window into current hospital-based post-acute care offerings by summarizing both hospital- and market-level factors that are associated with rural hospitals that provided post-acute care between 2012 and 2015.
For other briefs related to this topic see:
- The Financial Importance of Medicare Post-Acute and Hospice Care to Rural Hospitals (July 2017). Schulte A, Howard H, Pink, G.
- Rural and Urban Provider Market Share of Inpatient Post-Acute Care Services Provided to Rural Medicare Beneficiaries (April 2018). Schulte A, Kirk D, Randolph R; Pink G.