CMS has released an-agency-wide Rural Health Strategy that seeks to “better serve individuals in rural areas and avoid unintended consequences of policy and program implementation.” The Strategy has five objectives:

  1. Apply a rural lens to CMS programs and policies (e.g., apply a new checklist to relevant policies, procedures, and initiatives that impact rural communities)
  2. Improve access to care through provider engagement and support (e.g., maximize scope of practice)
  3. Advance telehealth and telemedicine (e.g., address reimbursement, cross-state licensure issues, and administrative/financial burdens)
  4. Empower patients in rural communities to make decisions about their healthcare (e.g., support adoption of health information technology)
  5. Leverage partnerships to achieve the goals of the CMS Rural Health Strategy (e.g., work with state partners, federal agencies, and health plan representatives).