Physician Practice

HRSA awards grants to improve primary care and telehealth in rural communities

Physician Practice Insider, August 23, 2016

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is awarding more than $16 million in grants for providers serving rural communities. Sixty rural communities in 32 states will receive grants. Seven rural health research centers will also be beneficiaries.

Individual grants are awarded under four grant programs tailored to rural providers and communities. These are:

  • Small health care provider quality improvement (21 awards)
  • Flex rural veterans’ health access program (Three awards)
  • Telehealth network grant program (21 awards)
  • Rural health research centers (Seven awards)

The largest share of the grant money, $6,286,264, will go to the telehealth network grant program. Under this grant program, awardees will receive $300,000 per year for up to three years. Funds will be used to build telehealth networks and programs that will be sustainable over the long term. All networks awarded this grant include at least one school-based health center.

Approximately $4 million will be awarded to small health provider quality improvement grants. These grants focus on helping primary care providers in rural communities implement and meet quality improvement and care coordination goals among populations with high rates of chronic diseases. Providers participating in the program must use health IT to collect and report data, and use an evidence-based quality improvement model.

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