Update: Health Care Reform Wars

by Debra Kozikowski

fairview-hosp

“Neither urban nor rural alone has the ability to take up a change agenda for all Americans. Rural and urban joined together, however, can take up a new opportunity agenda that stands for everyone.”  Source: Our Shared Fate: Bridging the rural-urban divide creates new opportunities for prosperity and equity in America, June 2008

According to the Massachusetts State Office of Rural Health (September, 2008), there are 70 acute care hospitals in Massachusetts, 12 of which are located in rural areas. Fairview Hospital (pictured here), is one of three Massachusetts rural hospitals currently certified as Critical Access Hospitals (April, 2009). There is one Rural Health Clinic in Massachusetts (CMS, 2009). There are 52 community health centers across the state that provide services at 184 sites. Of these, six community health center organizations are providing services at 10 sites in rural communities.

Despite these facts, a Boston Globe story published on July 19, 2009 about health care reform claimed, “With its more urban demographics, Massachusetts has no rural hospitals …”

There’s work to be done.

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