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4 Population Health Challenges for Small and Rural Hospitals

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1. Population Demographics and Health

• 23% of U.S. population lives in rural area

• 19.8% of rural population is over 65 years old

• 16.6% of rural population lives in poverty

• Almost half of rural residents report at least one major chronic illness, including higher prevalence of diabetes mellitus, respiratory infections, obesity and heart disease

• Patients must travel farther for medical care

• Patient engagement in medical care is lower due to societal factors

[Source: American Hospital Association, 2013]