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19 SD hospitals get grants

PIERRE — Nineteen rural hospitals in South Dakota will receive a total of $227,409 in federal funding for projects to improve patient safety and access, reduce medication errors, reduce hospital readmissions and improve operations.

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In the Mitchell area, the hospitals include Burke Community Memorial Hospital, $8,900; Sanford Chamberlain Medical Center, $13,540; Avera Gregory Hospital, $5,009; Platte Health Center/Avera, $11,500; and Winner Regional Hospital, $15,000.

The federal Medicare Rural Hospital Flexibility Program funding comes through the South Dakota Department of Health. Over the last 13 years, rural hospitals in South Dakota have received more than $4.356 million in direct awards through the program.

Hospitals must be Medicare-certified as critical access to be eligible for the funds. Critical access hospitals receive a higher Medicare reimbursement rate and are eligible for federal funding for improvement projects. There are 38 critical access hospitals in South Dakota.

Source: S. D. Department of Health