Monday, July 26, 2010

Health-care expert creates roadmap of impact of reform legislation in rural America

A new publication from the Rural Policy Research Institute and the University of Iowa hopes to explain for rural-healh advocates the 900-plus page health care-reform legislation's effects on rural Americans. The publication, titled "The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: A Summary of Provisions Important to Rural Health Care Delivery," was authored by Keith Mueller, director of RUPRI's Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis and head of the university's Department of Health Management and Policy, the North Liberty Leader reports. The summary can be accessed at

The summary organizes the legislation into specific categories, including access to affordable insurance, insurance market reforms, quality improvement, public health, health-care workforce, Medicaid, Medicare and overall system changes. "This document creates a 'rural roadmap' for advocates, analysts, practitioners and policymakers as they continue the important task of improving the system as it affects rural interests," Mueller said. "During the legislative process, rural-conscious members of Congress succeeded in inserting provisions specific to rural needs, such as extending special payment policies in Medicare, extending and modifying the Rural Hospital Flexibility Program, and including rural areas in various demonstration projects and pilot programs. Their efforts are evident in this summary." (Read more)

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