Rural Health Care Outcomes Accelerator

Working to ensure Americans living in rural areas have the best possible chance of survival and the highest quality of life attainable by promoting consistent, timely and appropriate evidence-based care.

Image of a country road with road sign saying "Hospital"

Closing the Gap in Rural Outcomes

Recent healthcare metrics demonstrate a concerning trend: rural Americans face higher mortality rates than urban residents. Data indicates that rural residents are at 30% higher risk of stroke, 40% more likely to develop heart disease and live an average of three years fewer than urban counterparts.

The American Heart Association is committed to bringing equitable care to all.  For that reason, we are focused on closing the gap between rural and urban hospital care as a top priority.

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Get With The Guidelines® at No Cost For Rural Hospitals 

Up to 700 rural hospitals will receive no-cost access to add new Get With The Guidelines quality programs for coronary artery disease, heart failure, and stroke

These programs allow hospitals to measure compliance of evidence-based guidelines, benchmark with peers, and improve on quality of patient care, while simultaneously bringing up-to-date information to inform healthcare guidelines.

To maximize impact, rural eligible hospitals will be prioritized based upon their potential to impact the largest number of patients in geographic areas with the highest CVD mortality.

Program Benefits

In addition to the benefits of The Get With The Guidelines programs, participating hospitals will work with American Heart Association Quality Improvement Consultants to learn model practices relevant to their region and size. 

Rural Community Network

Each hospital will be invited to participate in rural learning collaboratives and receive access to professional education through The American Heart Association's Lifelong Learning Center. Hospitals will also have access to clinical experts and thought leaders at conferences and seminars. 

 The Rural Community Network will be available to all rural hospitals, regardless of status or enrollment with the accelerator. 

Eligible Hospitals

To be eligible for no-cost Get With The Guidelines, hospitals must be new enrollers in one or more of the offered programs. The Rural Health Care Outcomes Accelerator does not apply to program renewals for hospitals already participating in the offered Get With The Guidelines programs.  If your hospital already participates in one or more Get With The Guidelines programs, you may be eligible to add additional new programs through the accelerator, provided they are listed within the offerings above. 

Additionally, hospitals must fit at least one of the below criteria. Contact us directly for specific eligibility inquiries. 

  • Federally designated critical access hospitals
  • Short-term acute care facilities and rural hospital located in Rural Urban Commuting Area Codes (RUCA) indicating rural and isolated geographic locations (Codes 4-10 and 99).
  • Doctor standing proudly

    Did you know? Several Programs Have Awards Specifically for Rural Hospitals

    Independent of the Rural Health Care Outcomes Accelerator, the American Heart Association recognizes that rural hospitals work with varied patient care dynamics. For that reason, all rural hospitals participating in Get With The Guidelines Stroke, Heart Failure or Coronary Artery Disease, whether involved in the accelerator or not, are eligible to receive award recognition focused on a unique set of performance metrics:

    Recognizing Rural Hospital Awardees

    All rural hospitals participating in Get With The Guidelines Stroke, Coronary Artery Disease and Heart Failure are eligible. 

    These hospitals met achievement criteria for the Get With The Guidelines-Stroke Rural Acute award in the first year of availability, giving them the status of Bronze-level award. Learn more about rural stroke award criteria here. 

    View 2023 Award Winners (PDF)

    Interested? Reach Out.

    If your hospital fits the eligibility criteria above, contact our teams for more information on the application and implementation process. 
    Schedule a Meeting
    Meet with the Rural Team to discuss participation and eligibility.
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