Rural Women Delivering Babies in Non-Local Hospitals: Differences by Rurality and Insurance Status
Kozhimannil K., Casey M., Hung P., Prasad S., Moscovice I.
This policy brief describes the extent to which rural pregnant women give birth in non-local hospitals, and to analyze current patterns of non-local delivery by rural women’s health insurance status and residential rurality.
- In nine geographically-diverse states with substantial rural populations, 25.4% of rural pregnant women delivered their babies in non-local hospitals in 2010 and 2012.
- Rural women living in more densely populated rural areas were less likely to give birth in a non-local hospital (19.5%) than those in less densely populated rural areas, either next to a metropolitan area (35.9%) or not (33.7%).
- Privately-insured rural women were more likely to give birth in non-local hospitals than rural women who were covered by Medicaid (28.6% vs. 22.5%).
- Rural women with Medicaid coverage were more likely than privately-insured women to deliver their babies in a hospital where more than half of all births were covered by Medicaid (63.8% vs. 36.7%).