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.

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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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Is Rural America Hazardous to Your Health?

This article was contributed by Jon M. Bailey, former Rural Policy Program Director at the Center for Rural Affairs. You can reach him at jonmbailey1@gmail.com.

Those of us who live in rural America often proclaim its positive attributes and its extraordinary quality-of-life.

However, a recent article in HealthLeaders Media raises an interesting question based on extensive data and surveys of rural health care providers. Is rural America hazardous to your health?

The Bottom Line: Medicaid Expansion a Fiscal Winner for Nebraska

Evidence shows that states that have expanded Medicaid have witnessed substantially faster growth in healthcare jobs than states that have not expanded.
 
According to a report from Dr. Allan Jenkins and Dr. Ron Konecny of the University of Nebraska at Kearney, expanding Medicaid in Nebraska would support 10,779 jobs in Nebraska in FY 2019-20. This is crucial in lower income areas, including rural Nebraska, where Medicaid expansion would have a larger effect and where jobs, particularly well-paying healthcare jobs, are needed.