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Workshop calls attention to rural healthcare crisis

Kansas City Star, May 6, 2008
The Association of Health Care Journalists recently held its first Rural Health Journalism Workshop at the University of Missouri-Columbia. Speakers at the workshop included Don Sipes, vice president of regional services for St. Luke's Health System and chief executive officer of St. Luke's Northland Hospital-Smithville. Sipes noted that many rural hospitals have suffered and even closed because their patient volume and Medicare reimbursement couldn't keep up with the cost of new medical equipment. He added, however, that telemedicine programs can keep patients in their communities and deliver the same quality of care they would in an urban area.