New Dashboard Helps Families and Health Care Workers Determine Bed Availability in Long-Term Care Settings

March 13, 2024

New Dashboard Helps Families and Health Care Workers Determine Bed Availability in Long-Term Care Settings

A new dashboard has been developed to assist Missourians in locating long-term care facilities with bed and service availability.

“This resource will assist individuals looking for long-term care placement options specific to their needs in their desired area of the state,” said Missouri Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program Director, Jenny Hollandsworth.

Long-term care facilities, including all levels of care, are strongly encouraged to complete an electronic survey weekly to report how many beds they have available, and which resident needs they can serve, i.e., memory care, behavioral health, bariatric, etc.

The survey and dashboard can be found on the Long-Term Care Ombudsman website, along with instructional videos. Questions can be directed to the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program at

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services – Updated Toolkit

March 12, 2024

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services – Updated Toolkit

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) updated their toolkit for states on telehealth coverage policies in the Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Programs (CHIP) so that it is relevant now that the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE) has ended.

The toolkit provides insights into:

  • Telehealth platforms
  • Effective billing practices
  • Lessons learned from states amid and post COVID-19 PHE
  • Approaches to ensure accessible and culturally sensitive care delivery through telehealth.

The toolkit outlines:

  • Strategies for telehealth within value-based care frameworks
  • Evaluation methodologies to gauge its impact on quality
  • Outcomes
  • Costs
  • Initiatives for effectively communicating, training, and equipping both providers and beneficiaries with telehealth resources

Information included in Toolkit:

  • Detailed description of the common telehealth modalities
  • A section for frequently asked questions
  • A description of Medicaid trends throughout recent years
  • Strategies for delivering services via telehealth to specific populations
  • Operational consideration of implementing telehealth

Click Here to Access the Toolkit

FREE Ventilator for Rural Hospitals

March 12, 2024

The Office of Rural Health and Primary Care (ORHPC) has been notified that the Strategic National Stockpile is offering all Rural Hospitals the opportunity to claim a FREE ventilator.

Important Notes:

  • These ventilators were first offered to rural hospitals in 2021
  • All rural hospitals are eligible to request a ventilator
    • Regardless of participation in 2021
  • Request your ventilator now, by completing the Rural Hospital Ventilator Form
    • Be sure to include appropriate and accurate point of contacts
    • You will also need to coordinate with logistics and respiratory departments to ensure smooth delivery of the unit

Ventilator Distribution Opportunity for Rural Hospitals, Frequently Asked Questions:

  • How many ventilators can I request?
    • rural hospitals may submit a request for more than one ventilator (per model) via the interest form. However, please remember there is no guarantee as distribution is contingent on availability
  • Can I request a new ventilator if I already received a ventilator in 2021 during the COVID-19 response?
    • Yes. Rural hospitals may request a ventilator(s) regardless if they participated in the previous distribution of ventilators
  • Will I need to return the ventilator?
    • No. However, you will be responsible for ongoing maintenance of the ventilator
  • What is included in the ventilator kit?
    • Each model should include one ventilator and one accessory kit
  • Do I need to cover the cost for shipping and delivery of the ventilator?
    • No. Once the ventilators are ready to ship, the Strategic National Stockpile will coordinate with their contractor to confirm and arrange delivery.
      • Prior to delivery, it’s important your hospital’s point of contact coordinate internally with your logistics and respiratory team to ensure the equipment will be delivered to the correct facility.
  • Ventilator models available include:
    • ResMed Astral 150
    • AutoMedx SAVE II
      • Please note: these models were NOT produced through the Defense Production Act and have been fully maintained and cleared by the FDA for regular use.

Claim Your Free Ventilator Today

CMS Resource Documents – Understanding and Using New Payment Codes

March 11, 2024

CMS Resource Documents – Understanding and Using New Payment Codes

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently released two new resources to assist providers and stakeholders in understanding and using new payment codes.

New RHIhub Topic Guide – Rural Maternal Health

February 21, 2024

New RHIhub Topic Guide – Rural Maternal Health

The RHIhub has released the Rural Maternal Health Topic Guide.

This new topic guide shares information on maternal and infant health disparities in rural area and covers issues impacting rural maternal health, including:

  • Access to services,
  • Workforce challenges and
  • Shares information on programs and policies to support rural maternal healthcare.

Rural Maternal Health Topic Guide

See All  Topic Guides

New COPD Videos available: Getting Started with Pulmonary Rehab in Rural Communities

.February 20, 2024

New COPD Videos available: Getting Started with Pulmonary Rehab in Rural Communities

Two new educational videos now available from the National Rural Health Resource Center highlight the prevalence of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in the country’s rural communities and the steps that critical access hospitals and other small rural hospitals can take to improve access to  much-needed pulmonary rehabilitation services.

The first video, Understanding COPD and Pulmonary Rehabilitation, provides an overview of COPD – its symptoms ad causes – and explains how rural-based pulmonary rehabilitation services help to restore independence and quality of like in COPD patients.

The second video, How to Launch a Pulmonary Rehab Program, highlights the benefits – to hospitals and their community – of operating rural pulmonary rehab programs, and shares practical advice and tips on how critical access hospitals and small rural hospitals can successfully build and sustain their own pulmonary rehab programs. The video includes a look at two critical access hospitals – Sparta Community Hospital in Illinois and Hood Memorial Hospital in Louisiana – that opened pulmonary rehab programs in 2023.

Additional Resources


Telehealth & Prescribing

February 7, 2024

Telehealth & Prescribing

On January 31, 2024, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) finalized rules for the prescribing of buprenorphine through the use of telehealth.

In these final rules, opioid treatment programs (OTPs) will be able to use telehealth to prescribe buprenorphine without an in-person visit.

It is important to note that these final rules are not in regard to using telehealth to prescribe a controlled substance in general. This is a very specific rule that applies to OTPs and the use of telehealth to prescribe buprenorphine with some additional applications specifically to methadone.

The broader policy of using telehealth to prescribe controlled substances without an in-person visit (or meeting one of the narrow exceptions found in federal statute) still remains a temporary allowance through the end of 2024.

Read Full Details

HIPAA and Privacy Concerns: Telehealth Technology Considerations

February 6, 2024

HIPAA and Privacy Concerns: Telehealth Technology Considerations

The telehealth platform you use should meet HIPAA requirements.

All telehealth services provided by covered health care providers and health plans must comply with the HIPAA Rules.

This means only using technology vendors that comply with HIPAA Rules and will enter into HIPAA business associate agreements .


Trainings by American Institute of Healthcare Compliance (AIHC)

Update on Efficiency of Store-and-Forward

February 6, 2024

Update on Efficiency of Store-and-Forward

Telehealth refers to a collection of methods to enhance health care delivery and education – it’s not a specific service.

Telehealth spans four distinct applications:

  • Live video
  • Store-and-forward
  • Remote patient monitoring
  • Mobile health

Store-and-forward is considered “asynchronous telehealth, a communication between parties that is not live.” It is a service rendered outside of a real-time or live interaction with a patient.

According to, asynchronous direct-to-patient telehealth can streamline patient workflows:

  • Standardized patient data
  • Flexibility
  • Efficient automated patient intake

Store-and-forward commonly used in:

  • Radiology
  • Pathology
  • Dermatology
  • Ophthalmology
  • Electronic consultations

Telehealth Resources