Critical Access Hospitals

Critical access hospitals (CAHs) are vital for maintaining access to high-quality health care services in rural communities. Since established by the Balanced Budget Act of 1997, the AHA has been a champion for its CAH members.

CAHs represent a quarter of all U.S. and more than two-thirds of all rural community hospitals. Securing the future of CAHs and the essential role they play in caring for rural America is of paramount importance. The AHA remains vigilant in the face of legislative, regulatory and policy proposals that threaten either the local delivery of care or rural community health status.

We advocate for CAH program improvements and enhancements as well as fixes to payment and administrative limitations that constrain the efficiency and effectiveness of these essential health care providers. AHA is deeply committed to ensuring that the needs of these safety-net hospitals are met through:

  1. Representation and advocacy
  2. Executive education, communication and management strategies
  3. CEO and trustee engagement
 
Communications

Representation and Advocacy

 
 

Tools and Resources

Access to Care in Vulnerable Communities

For millions of Americans living in vulnerable rural and urban communities, their hospital is often the only source of care. However, many of these hospitals are fighting to survive – potentially leaving their communities at risk for losing access to health care services. The AHA'...

Rural Regulatory Policy

RULEMAKING AND REGULATORY POLICY Medicare policy changes and payment adjustments often have significant and problematic consequences for rural providers. AHA is sensitive to the administrative burden and cost created by rules that fail to consider the unique circumstances of small or...

FCC Rural Health Care Program

The Rural Health Care Program, which includes the new Healthcare Connect Fund, provides funding to eligible health care providers (HCPs) for telecommunications and broadband services necessary for the provision of health care. The goal of the program is to improve the quality of heal...

Related Resources

Letter
Public
The American Hospital Association submits comments on how the Federal Communications Commission can encourage health care provider participation in its…
Testimony
Public
The AHA appreciates the opportunity to provide input regarding action Congress can take to maintain access to quality, affordable health care in rural…
Bibliography/Link Page
There are numerous rural health grant opportunities aimed at improving the quality of health care in rural areas—made available to hospitals in the form of…
Advocacy
Public
Rural Advocacy Senate Hearing Examines Rural Health Care: The Senate Finance Committee May 24 held a hearing on "Rural Health Care in Ame
Factsheet
Public
The AHA Task Force on Ensuring Access in Vulnerable Communities examined ways in which the access to and delivery of care could be improved. This strategy –…
Testimony
Public
AHA statement before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Communications and Technology: Realizing the Benefits of Rural Broadband: Challenges and…