How Have Changes in Insurance Coverage Under Health Reform Affected Uncompensated Care and Financial Performance in Rural Hospitals?

Lead researcher:
Project funded:
September 2014
Project completed:
May 2016
This two-year project will explore the effects of changes in insurance coverage under health reform on the following outcomes in rural hospitals: (1) bad debt; (2) charity care; (3) payer mix (Medicare, Medicaid, other); (3) financial performance; and (4) hospital revenue cycle management. Results will inform federal and state agencies, rural providers and communities as to how implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is impacting reimbursement and financial performance of rural hospitals, allowing the Office of Rural Health Policy to identify emerging challenges and develop strategies or policy changes needed to deal with any unintended consequences.


  • Does ACA Insurance Coverage Expansion Improve the Financial Performance of Rural Hospitals?
    Policy Brief
    North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center
    Date: 04/2016
    Views on how the implementation of the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) expanded insurance coverage is affecting the financial performance of rural hospitals. The study found that while respondents believe the expanded insurance coverage was the right thing to do for patients, they worried coverage may not be adequate to ensure access to care.