Moab Regional Hospital (MRH) scored in the top 100 nationally of critical access hospitals on the iVantage Hospital Strength Index, according to a news release from MRH.
The index is the industry’s “most comprehensive rating of U.S. acute care hospitals, and the only one to include the country’s 1,300 CAHs,” the news release stated, adding that the results “recognize that the Top 100 Critical Access Hospitals provide a safety net to communities across rural America — measuring them across 66 different performance metrics, including quality, outcomes, patient perspective, affordability, population risk and efficiency.”
“Rural healthcare deserves the same performance analysis as all provider performance. It plays a vital role for communities across America, serving nearly 80 million people,” John Morrow, executive vice president of iVantage Health Analytics, said in the news release. “The services provided in rural America are similar to those needed in any major metropolitan area, yet the volumes and economic resources provide little economies of scale, making for little benefit from scale. These top 100 Critical Access Hospitals exhibit a focused concern for their community benefits and needs, regardless of scale, reimbursement and people’s ability to pay.”
Moab Regional Hospital CEO Robb Austin praised the hospital’s physicians and staff for their dedication to “putting the patient first, delivering quality cost-effective healthcare, and promoting wellness,” all factors that helped MRH receive the recognition from iVantage, Austin said.
“This is the second national award that Moab Regional Hospital has received this year, and while the first award recognized the hospital’s significant financial improvement over the last two years,” Austin said in the news release. “This award recognizes affordability and scope of services; merits which are important to our patients.”
In March, the National Rural Health Resource Center recognized Moab Regional Hospital for its work in successfully addressing the hospital’s financial difficulties.
To ensure that its charges for services were competitively priced and fair, MRH hired an independent firm to perform a review of their pricing compared to other regional hospitals, including St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction, according to the news release.
Craig Daniels, the hospital’s chief financial officer, said it typically costs more for rural hospitals to provide care, “because the equipment and providers cost the same as in urban areas, but the volume of usage is much lower.” He explained that while many Critical Access Hospitals pass those expenses on to the patient, the iVantage rating scale showed that MRH found other ways to mitigate the costs.
Over the last two years MRH has been working to improve its financial aid program, expanded community health education programs and brought a Medicaid eligibility counselor on-site to ease the application process for eligible patients, Jen Sadoff, MRH director of community relations, said in the news release. Last fall, the hospital sponsored several community outreach events to help educate local residents and business about the Affordable Care Act. MRH also provided resources to help area residents enroll for health insurance through the ACA. The hospital has also launched discount programs for uninsured and cash-paying patients in both mammography and Magnetic Resonance Imagery.
“Access to care is a high priority for Moab Regional Hospital, so we continue to look for opportunities to ensure that community members can afford to access healthcare and to improve community health,” Sadoff said. “This commitment is demonstrated in the data, which is why Moab Regional Hospital received this award.”
The list of the top 100 Critical Access Hospitals and more information about the study can be found at www.iVantageHealth.com.