The AHA today called the Rural Emergency Acute Care Hospital Act (S. 1130) “an important first step toward ensuring access to health care services in some rural communities.” Introduced this week by Sens. Charles Grassley (R-IA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Cory Gardner (R-CO), the REACH Act would allow critical access hospitals and prospective payment system hospitals with 50 or fewer beds to convert to rural emergency hospitals and continue providing necessary emergency and observation services. REHs would receive enhanced reimbursement rates of 110% of reasonable costs, and enhanced reimbursement for the transportation of patients to acute care hospitals in neighboring communities. In a letter of support to the bill’s sponsors, AHA Executive Vice President Tom Nickels said the association looks forward to working with Congress to ensure access to essential health care services in all vulnerable communities, and urged Congress to consider the recommendations made by AHA’s Task Force on Ensuring Access in Vulnerable Communities.

Related News Articles

Headline
Tax-exempt hospitals and health systems provided $95 billion in community benefits in 2016, almost 11 times the value of their federal tax exemption.
Headline
The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health today held a hearing on seven bills aimed at improving transparency in the drug supply chain to lower…
Headline
The Government Accountability Office yesterday named two new members to the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission.
Headline
Despite some progress in transparency related to the process for Section 1115 Medicaid waivers, the Centers for Medicare…
Chairperson's File
During Mental Health Month, let’s all remember that caring for the whole person improves health and saves lives.
Headline
he House of Representatives last night voted 234-183 to pass legislation (H.R. 987) that combines several AHA-supported bills to help lower prescription drug…