Kristin Reiter, PhD

North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center

Phone: 919.843.8619
Email: reiter@email.unc.edu

University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill


Current Projects - (4)

  • Hospital Readmission Following Care in a Swing Bed
    This study builds on our portfolio of swing bed work by examining the rate of hospital readmission for patients who receive post-acute care in swing beds compared to skilled nursing facilities and will inform the discussion on use, cost, and benefit of swing bed care.
    Research center: North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center
    Topics: Hospitals and clinics, Medicare, Medicare Prospective Payment System (PPS), Post-acute care, Quality
  • How Do Costs for Rural Medicare Beneficiaries Using Swing Beds Compare to Those Using Skilled Nursing Facilities?
    This study will estimate and compare total Medicare expenditures for episodes of care that include post-acute stays in either swing beds or skilled nursing facilities (SNFs). Results will inform federal and state agencies, rural providers and communities as to how post-acute care in swing bed versus a SNF affects the trajectory of costs and utilization for rural Medicare beneficiaries.
    Research center: North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center
    Topics: Long-term care, Medicare, Post-acute care
  • How Medicare Payment Standardization Affects the Perceived "Cost" of Post-Acute Care Provided in Critical Access Hospital Swing Beds
    Medicare-allowed charges are adjusted for geographic cost differences and payments that support larger Medicare program goals. This study aims to identify the effects of the payment standardization method on the perceived "cost" of post-acute care provided in Critical Access Hospital swing beds.
    Research center: North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center
    Topics: Critical Access Hospitals, Hospitals and clinics, Medicare, Post-acute care
  • Rural-Urban Variation in CMS Hierarchical Condition Categories (HCC) Risk Scores
    CMS uses hierarchical condition categories (HCC) to risk-adjust Medicare beneficiaries for multiple conditions. This adjustment is used for multiple programs, but it's unknown whether the adjustment works similarly in rural and urban areas. This project investigates the distribution of beneficiaries' and providers' HCC risk scores across rurality.
    Research center: North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center
    Topic: Medicare

Completed Projects - (2)

  • Financial Impact of Reimbursing CAH Swing Bed Days at the SNF PPS Rate
    This study assessed the financial impact of changing Critical Access Hospital (CAH) swing bed reimbursement from the cost-based system to the skilled nursing facility (SNF) prospective payment system (PPS).
    Research center: North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center
    Topics: Critical Access Hospitals, Healthcare financing, Long-term care, Medicare, Post-acute care
  • How Have Changes in Insurance Coverage Under Health Reform Affected Uncompensated Care and Financial Performance in Rural Hospitals?
    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.
    Research center: North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center
    Topics: Health reform, Hospitals and clinics, Private health insurance, Uninsured and underinsured

Publications - (12)

2020

2019

2018

2017

  • CMS Hospital Quality Star Rating: For 762 Rural Hospitals, No Stars is the Problem
    Policy Brief
    Rapid Response to Requests for Rural Data Analysis
    Date: 06/2017
    The purpose of this brief is to look more closely at the characteristics of rural hospitals with and without CMS Hospital Quality Star Ratings to help inform ongoing discussions about the usefulness of the quality star rating for comparing hospital quality and possible ways to improve the star rating initiative.

2016

  • 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.

2015

2014

  • Rural Hospital Mergers and Acquisitions: Who Is Being Acquired and What Happens Afterward?
    Policy Brief
    North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center
    Date: 08/2014
    A brief from the North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center examines the implications of mergers and acquisitions for small rural hospitals. The brief addresses the characteristics of rural hospitals that merged and the changes in hospital financial performance, staffing, or services following a merger.

2013

  • Provision of Uncompensated Care by Rural Hospitals: A Preliminary Look at Medicare Cost Report Worksheet S-10
    Policy Brief
    North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center
    Date: 08/2013
    This brief is a preliminary assessment of uncompensated care data quality included in Medicare Cost Report Worksheet S-10 for critical access hospitals and other rural hospitals to identify data quality issue implications for research and policy decisions. Worksheet S-10 data were collected from the Healthcare Cost Reporting Information System.