AHA Nov. 27 applauded the Assistance for Rural Community Hospitals Act (H.R. 6430), legislation that would extend for five additional years the Medicare-dependent Hospital program and enhanced low-volume Medicare adjustment. Congress established the MDH program in 1987 to help support small rural hospitals for which Medicare patients make up a significant percentage of inpatient days or discharges, and the LVA program in 2005 to help isolated, rural hospitals with a low number of discharges. 

“Your legislation will help keep the doors open at rural hospitals and allow them to continue serving their local communities during this time of sustained financial pressure and historic changes in care delivery,” AHA said in a letter to Reps. Carol Miller, R-W.Va., and Terri Sewell, D-Ala., who recently introduced the bill.

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