Rural Health

We work with you to promote policy that makes health insurance affordable for small businesses, entrepreneurs and family farmers and ranchers and to ensure policy supports small town doctors, clinics and hospitals.

Rural people have less access to health networks and health care providers, greater rates of disability and chronic diseases, and higher use of all public health care programs. Because of high rates of self-employment and small business employment, rural Americans have lower rates of employer-provided benefits. We're more likely to be underinsured or uninsured for longer periods of time. The 50 million people in rural America are most in need of health care system reform. And we have much to contribute to any reform debate.

Health care is also a major barrier to rural economic development that creates genuine opportunity and reduces poverty. Micro-enterprise and small business development is the most effective path in many communities for low and moderate-income rural people to pull themselves out of poverty. But if small entrepreneurs cannot gain affordable access to health care for themselves or their employees, that path is blocked. Any hope of building genuine economic opportunity for struggling rural Americans through entrepreneurship must be accompanied by reforming the health care system in a way that benefits both small business owners and their employees.

For more information on how the Affordable Care Act will work for you, your business or your community visit this page.

Get Covered Calculator: Estimate Your Costs - calculate your estimated monthly health insurance cost.
Healthcare Exchange Calculator in Spanish - from the Kaiser Family Foundation website.

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Rural Health Notes

 

Bottom Line: Medicaid Expansion in Nebraska

Data clearly shows economic benefits from expanding Medicaid flow to families throughout the state and to the state’s economy as a whole. Medicaid expansion is a policy and economic winner for Nebraska and for those who would benefit from the health insurance coverage offered by it.

This brief is the final in a series examining the rural impacts of a Univeristy of Nebraska Kearney cost-benefit analysis on economic and income issues connected to expanding Medicaid in Nebraska.

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Stronger Health Care Infrastructure & Healthier Nebraskans: Medicaid Expansion in Nebraska

Medicaid expansion in Nebraska will make health care providers fiscally stronger, especially those in rural Nebraska. Ensuring access to health care for all Nebraskans will help to alleviate the health care cost shifting that affects all of us.

A healthier and more stable work force will emerge from greater access to health care, benefiting the state's employers and businesses. Medicaid expansion in Nebraska is a policy and economic winner.

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Rural Nerds: Counting on Better Health

This week our Throwback Thursday - #tbt - Top 10 Rural Research Reports rundown focuses on our health care research.

We're nerdishly modest, but it's no exaggeration to say we were among the first rural organizations to focus on health care. You'll see why as our countdown continues with number 8.

Four Ways to Address Income Inequity on the Rural Great Plains

Data show that rates of income inequality are high in rural counties of the Great Plains region, and generally significantly higher than urban areas of the region, particularly compared to suburban areas of the major cities of the region. This handful of policy responses can begin to address income inequality and make an economic system that works better for low-income individuals and families.

Food Environment on the Rural Great Plains

Jon M Bailey looks at food access and security in rural and non-rural counties of the Great Plains. 

Food is a major component of health and healthy living. Consumption of healthy foods and a balanced diet will limit obesity, accompanying health issues, and premature death. But not all people have equal access to healthy foods or live in a healthy food environment.