By Austin Frakt, NY Times
The potential health and economic consequences of a trend associated with states that have turned down Medicaid expansion.
Hospitals are often thought of as the hubs of our health care system. But hospital closings are rising, particularly in some communities.
Beyond the potential health consequences for the people living nearby, hospital closings can exact an economic toll, and are associated with some states’ decisions not to expand Medicaid as part of the Affordable Care Act.
Since 2010, nearly 90 rural hospitals have shut their doors. By one estimate, hundreds of other rural hospitals are at risk of doing so.
In its June report to Congress, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission found that of the 67 rural hospitals that closed since 2013, about one-third were more than 20 miles from the next closest hospital.
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