Rural Health Clinics

Receive enhanced reimbursement rates for providing Medicaid and Medicare services in rural areas.


Photo credit: Marlous Bleazard


About RHC

Rural Health Clinics (RHC) were established by Public Law 95-210, Rural Health Clinic Service Act in 1977. Rural Health Clinics serve to increase primary care access for Medicaid and Medicare patients in rural communities and must be located in a Health Professional Shortage Area or a Medically Underserved Area/Population to be originally certified. Clinics may be operated as a public, private, or non-profit entities. The advantage of becoming a certified Rural Health Clinic is receiving enhanced reimbursement rates for providing Medicaid and Medicare services in rural areas.

How to participate

Thank you for expressing interest in participating in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Rural Health Clinic program (CMS RHC). To be eligible for participation, your primary care clinic must be in compliance with the program requirements.  Below, you will find links to the required application documents, which need to be completed and returned promptly to avoid any unnecessary delays in the approval process.

When it is determined that all requirements are met, the Health Insurance Benefits Agreement will be countersigned and a copy will be returned.  If operation of the entire institution is later transferred to another owner, ownership group, or to a lessee, the agreement can be transferred by submitting a new CMS Form 855A with the Change of Ownership (CHOW) information completed. You are required to notify the Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) and the Office of Licensing at the time you are planning such a transfer.

Become a Rural Health Clinic

If you are interested in becoming certified as a Rural Health Clinic, please refer to the Health Facility Licensing, Certification, and Resident Assessment.

Clinics must comply with specific requirements established by federal law and guidance by CMS to become certified by CMS. For example, although NPs are able to practice independently in Utah, a physician must be at least contracted to be the medical director of the RHC. The RHC must also employ (W-2) at least one NP or PA. Please click the learn more button to view the Division of Licensing and Background Checks. 

Learn More

National Association of Rural Health Clinics

The National Association of Rural Health Clinics' mission is to educate and advocate for Rural Health Clinics, enhancing their ability to deliver cost-effective, quality health care to patients in rural, underserved communities.

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NOSORH RHC Resources

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Starting a
Rural Health Clinic

Read manual

RHCs and FQHCs

Read manual

Shortage Designations

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Resources for becoming a Rural Health Clinic

The Rural Health Information Hub, formerly the Rural Assistance Center, is funded by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy to be a national clearinghouse on rural health issues. 










The Utah Department of Health and Human Services may occasionally link to outside sources of information. DHHS and the state of Utah do not necessarily endorse the provider of the content and are not responsible for any content published on the external site.

Program contact info

Liz Craker
Health Systems Support Coordinator

Codes and rules

Read about the codes and rules that govern this office.

Learn more

Code of Federal Regulations