The State Office of Rural Health (SORH) manages several federal grants to support rural hospitals and other health care providers remain sustainable over time and make the transition to value-based reimbursement.
The purpose of the Flex program is to support the long-term sustainability of critical access hospitals (CAHs) and related health services in rural areas across the nation.
Funded by HRSA, this ongoing grant program supports CAHs and statewide partners to improve quality of care, finances/operations, population health, emergency medical services (EMS) and/or supporting hospital transition to other organizational models that might better serve their communities.
The budget period for this grant runs from Sept 1 to Aug 31 each year. Sub-grant interim reports are quarterly and a final report is due in mid-September.
Current/recent funded projects:
Vermont Program for Quality in Health Care, Inc. (VPQHC) – technical assistance and peer learning to support data reporting, quality improvement, CMS Conditions of Participation Survey (COPS) readiness,
Also: health equity trainings, and establishment of telehealth services and equipment, and development quality framework development, suicide prevention planning in emergency departments.
Vermont Ethics Network (VEN) – staff/provider training on end-of-life planning and ethical decision-making; translation of key End-of-life documents into multiple languages, including for the hearing and visually impaired.
New England Rural Health Association (NERHA) – access to professional development courses through Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), certification courses, regional conferences and webinars related to rural health care.
CAH-specific projects (when funding allows) – partial reimbursement of costs related to revenue cycle management improvement, chargemaster updates and process improvements.