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Small Rural Hospital Improvement Program (SHIP)

We fund states through the Small Rural Hospital Improvement Program (SHIP). This helps rural hospitals with 49 or fewer beds.

How do hospitals use funds?

Hospitals use SHIP funds to improve operations. This includes hardware, software, and training. Funding varies by program and state.

How many hospitals does SHIP serve?

The program serves over 1,600 small, rural hospitals and Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) across the United States. 

What does SHIP help these hospitals do?

  • Improve how to collect data for reports
  • Help boost quality outcomes
  • Make everyone accountable across the continuum of care
  • Maintain accurate billing and coding

How has SHIP helped rural hospitals in 2021?

  • About 52% of SHIP hospitals used funds to improve patient satisfaction.
  • Nearly 25% of hospitals used funds to support telehealth implementation.
  • Almost 23% of hospitals used funds to comply with price transparency rules. 

How can my hospital qualify?

To qualify for SHIP funds, your hospital must:  

  • Be an acute care hospital
  • Have 49 beds or fewer
  • Be located in a rural area
  • Be non-federal

How can my hospital participate?

Contact your State Office of Rural Health. They can let you know if you qualify, answer questions, and help you to apply.

Can my hospital apply for other programs?

If you’re a CAH, check out our Medicare Rural Hospital Flexibility Program (Flex).

How do State Offices of Rural Health (SORH) carry out SHIP?

State Offices of Rural Health receive funding for SHIP. Each SORH coordinates activities to support hospitals through SHIP.

Contact us

Reach out to the Project Officer in your state or contact us:
Mx. Krista M. Mastel, M.P.H.
Phone: 301-443-0491

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