An already-dire situation for the rural hospital market is getting tougher by the month as costs across the board to continue rise. As noted in an article published by Healthcare Dive, labor, medications, and everyday supplies keep going up while patient volume and reimbursements are stagnant or even falling in some areas. It’s gotten so bad that the American Hospital Association is expressing concern that access to care could become a major challenge—which could point to a community need that urgent care is well-qualified to meet. The Association’s fears are well grounded, as 136 rural hospitals closed between 2010 and 2021 and 14% of Americans live in areas classified as “rural.” JUCM was ahead of the curve in recognizing where rural markets might offer solid opportunity for growth while caring for an underserved population. You can read Rural and Tertiary Markets: The Next Urgent Care Frontier in our archive right now.
The Ongoing Bleak Outlook for Rural Hospitals Could Hold Promise for Urgent Care