Rural Hospitals (Flex Program)


Community Impact and Benefit Activities of Critical Access, Other Rural, and Urban Hospitals, 2017

Document Type


Publication Date



Rural Hospitals, Flex Program, MRHRC, critical access hospital, community benefit, community health, charity care

Funding Organization or Grant

Federal Office of Rural Health Policy


Non-profit and publicly-owned hospitals, including Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs), have obligations to address the health needs of their communities, with non-profit hospitals required to report their community benefit activities to the Internal Revenue Service. Community benefit activities include programs and services that provide treatment and/or promote health in response to identified community needs. To monitor the community impact and benefit activities of CAHs and to understand whether and how their community impact and benefit profiles differ from those of other hospitals, researchers at the Maine Rural Health Research Center's Flex Monitoring Team compared CAHs to other rural and urban hospitals using a set of indicators they developed.

This State Data Report on the community impact and benefit activities of Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs), rural non-CAHs, and urban hospitals enables State Flex Programs and CAH administrators to compare the community impact and benefit profiles of CAHs nationally to the performance of CAHs in their state. The report provides national data with key findings followed by state-specific tables.