Barriers to Nursing Home Care for Nonelderly Rural Residents

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Rural residents experience higher disability, mortality, and poverty rates than their urban counterparts; they also have more barriers to accessing care, including nursing home care. Meanwhile, the proportion of nonelderly adult nursing home residents (<65 years old) is growing, yet little is known about this population and barriers they face trying to access care, especially in rural areas. This qualitative study uses data from 23 semistructured interviews with rural hospital discharge planners in five states to identify specific barriers to finding nursing home care for nonelderly rural residents. We grouped those barriers into three primary themes—payment status, fit, and medical complexity—as well as two minor themes—caregivers and bureaucratic processes—and discuss each in the article, along with potential policy and programmatic interventions to improve access to nursing home care for nonelderly rural residents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1708-1727
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Applied Gerontology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019


  • Medicaid
  • disability
  • long-term care
  • nursing homes
  • rural

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

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