The financial sustainability of America’s rural and critical access hospitals is weakening, making it difficult for facilities to enhance their information technology portfolio. In fact, lagging IT is among the factors that will make it hard for small facilities to stay open.

During the last five years, rural hospitals have seen an erosion in crucial reimbursement mechanisms, particularly falling Medicare payments that dropped because of the congressional sequester that implemented across-the-board funding cuts, says Michael Topchik, senior vice president at iVantage Health Analytics, a data analytics and decision support vendor.

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