Mississippi hospital finally awarded rural emergency status after hiccups

Holly Springs, Miss.-based Alliance HealthCare has finally been granted rural emergency hospital status, a potential lifeline to struggling rural hospitals, Mississippi Today reported May 9.

The news comes after some uncertainty regarding the designation with CMS first approving such status and then apparently withdrawing it. The issue surrounded the hospital's proximity to Memphis, Tenn., which is only 50 miles away.

Now that the status is finalized, the first such designation in Mississippi, financially challenged Alliance will join four other hospitals in the country that have been awarded REH status.

Such a designation is dependent on any hospital closing its inpatient facilities in return for keeping an emergency room open. Such hospitals will receive higher reimbursement rates from the federal government as well as monthly stipends.

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