Federal Office of Rural Health Policy Announcements

July 16, 2020

HHS Announces $1 Billion to Certain Rural Providers and Other Providers from Small Metropolitan AreasOn July 10, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) announced an additional $1 billion in Provider Relief Funds to certain special rural Medicare designation hospitals in urban areas as well as others who provide care in smaller non-rural communities. HHS estimates the funding will provide relief of over $1 billion to 500 of these hospitals with payments ranging from $100,000 to $4,500,000 for rural-designated providers and $100,000 to $2,000,000 for the other providers. This is in addition to the $10 billion in funding to almost 4,000 rural health care providers including hospitals, health clinics, and health centers, announced by HHS in May. 

Telehealth Information for Patients Now Available in Spanish. The recently-created website for telehealth launched by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services in April now provides information in Spanish to help patients understand what types of care are available, how to prepare for a telehealth visit, and tips on finding telehealth options. Information in Spanish that’s geared toward providers will be available in the future. 

USPSTF Requesting Comment on Plan for COPD – July 29. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has posted a draft research plan on screening for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Request for Information: Seeking Stakeholder Input on Scientific Gaps and Research Needs Related to Delivery of Cancer-related Care via Telehealth July 30. The National Cancer Institute is seeking information on scientific gaps and research needs related to the delivery of cancer-related care via telehealth. This request for information is part of a planning effort designed to identify promising opportunities and set priorities for research in this area.

CDC Requesting Information on ACEs and Opioid Misuse in Tribal Communities – August 31. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) seeks public comment on an information collection project related to research to identify community-level protective factors and primary prevention strategies.

AJPH Examines the Rural-Urban Gap in Health and Social Services. In a special issue released this week, the American Journal of Public Health (AJPH) features a collection of 15 new studies demonstrating the connection between health and social services.  The  publication makes the case that these cross-sector connections have been slower to develop in rural communities than in urban.

Federal Office of Rural Health Policy FAQs for COVID-19. A set of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) from our grantees and stakeholders, updated regularly. 

COVID-19 FAQs and Funding for HRSA Programs. Find all funding and frequently asked questions for programs administered by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).

CDC COVID-19 Updates. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides daily updates and guidance, and ongoing Clinician Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA). New this week:  guidance for transferring patients from overwhelmed local health care facilities

Confirmed COVID-19 Cases, Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Counties. The RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis provides up-to-date data and maps on rural and urban confirmed cases throughout the United States.  An animated map shows the progression of cases beginning January 21.

Rural Response to Coronavirus Disease 2019. The Rural Health Information Hub has created a guide to help you learn about activities underway to address COVID-19.