National Rural Health Association (NRHA) Today

November 10, 2022

Could this be one of the worst years for hospital finances?

Despite having survived the worst of the pandemic, rural hospitals continue to struggle. In Wisconsin staffing shortages, worker burnout, and inflation could spell trouble, according to an industry report. Consistent negative margins are leading to what could be “one of the worst financial years for hospitals” as systems are hit by depressed revenues, heightened expenses, and unfavorable payer mixes. At a recent event moderated by NRHA member Robert Duehmig of the Oregon Office of Rural Health, rural hospital leaders cited challenges including staffing and retention issues. And across the country, 631 rural hospitals are considered at risk of closure. The bipartisan Save America’s Rural Hospitals Act was introduced to the 117th Congress to raise the rural health safety net and keep rural hospitals open. You can advocate for its passage here.