Evaluating State Flex Program Population Health Activities
population health, rural, evaluation, chronic conditions, social determinants of health, community health needs assessment
The Medicare Rural Hospital Flexibility (Flex) Program funds initiatives to improve the health of rural communities under Program Area 3: Population Health Improvement, in order to build the capacity of Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) to achieve measurable improvements in the health outcomes of their communities. Th authors provide an overview of the expectations for Program Area 3; summarize State Flex Program (SFP) initiatives under this Program Area; describe promising population health strategies implemented by SFPs; and discusse outcome measurement issues for population health, including providing an example a chain of short, intermediate, and long-term outcome measures for a potential population health activity. Th authors also portray a pathway to connect Flex Program population health efforts to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Healthy Rural Hometown Initiative (HRHI), a five-year multi-program effort to address the factors driving rural disparities in heart disease, cancer, unintentional injury, chronic lower respiratory disease, and stroke. Finally, the brief provides resources for outcome measurement in population health.
A companion brief, An Inventory of State Flex Program Population Health Initiatives for Fiscal Years 2019-2023, provides a detailed description of population health initiatives proposed by the 45 SFPs. This brief is available at: https://www.flexmonitoring.org/sites/flexmonitoring.umn.edu/files/media/InventoryofSFPPopHealthActivities_0.pdf
For more information, please contact John Gale at firstname.lastname@example.org
HRSA, Federal Office of Rural Health Policy
PHS Grant No. U27RH01080
Gale, J., Jewell, C., Kahn-Troster, S., & Croll, Z. (2022). Evaluating State Flex Program Population Health Activities. University of Southern Maine, Flex Monitoring Team. Retrieved from: https://www.flexmonitoring.org/sites/flexmonitoring.umn.edu/files/media/EvaluatingSFPPopHealthActivities.pdf