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Blunt & Hartzler Applaud Nevada Medical Center’s New Sole Community Hospital Status

June 03, 2019

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.) and U.S. Representative Vicky Hartzler (Mo.) today applauded the Nevada Regional Medical Center (NRMC) on receiving its Sole Community Hospital designation from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), a designation that will provide the hospital with an annual $800,000 subsidy. 

"This designation will help ensure Nevada Regional Medical Center is able to continue providing quality care to people in the area," said Blunt. "There is no doubt the community's efforts were absolutely critical in securing this designation, and I thank CMS Administrator Verma for her support." 

“I am thrilled the Nevada Medical Center will receive this much needed boost,” said Hartzler. “I’m honored that I was able to come alongside community members working to save the hospital by advocating for this designation and pushing for a timely decision by CMS.”

“The Sole Community Hospital designation is key to strengthening this hospital,” said Steve Branstetter, Chief Executive Officer at NRMC. “Our employees are doing all they can to narrow the gap between revenue and expenses. There are just a handful of outside things we rely on - referrals, community support and reimbursement rates - that can really push us into operating in the black and this is one of them. This is a huge win for NRMC.” 

NRMC applied in January to CMS to be designated as a Sole Community Hospital in the wake of the recent closing of Mercy Hospital in neighboring Fort Scott, Kan. and the failure of many rural hospitals across the country. Members of the Committee to Strengthen our Hospital reached out to Hartzler, who contacted Blunt, and they immediately sent a letter to CMS Administrator Seema Verma asking for a quick decision on the Sole Community Hospital designation. 

“Congress created the Sole Community Hospital program in 1983 to support small and rural hospitals in underserved areas such as NRMC,” Hartzler and Blunt wrote. “The Sole Community Hospital program could serve as a lifeline for NRMC and would ensure that nearby residents continue to have access to care.” 

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