FEBRUARY 25, 2020

Knox County Hospital Named Top 100 Rural & Community Hospital in U.S. Chartis Center for Rural Health Includes Knox County as one of six 2020 Texas honorees Knox City, Texas (February 25, 2020) – The Knox County Hospital today announced it has been named to the 2020 Top 100 Rural & Community Hospital list by The Chartis Center for Rural Health. It is the second time in the last four years that the Knox County Hospital has been singled out for Top 100 recognition nationally. Only six Texas rural hospitals were selected for this prestigious award.

“This award is validation for the staff, nurses and doctors who have worked so hard to deliver outstanding health care to our rural community,” said Stephen Kuehler, CEO of the Knox County Hospital. “It is demonstrable proof from an impartial judge that our hospital is providing critically important high-quality care to Knox and the surrounding counties. I couldn’t be prouder of our team.”

This annual award honoring rural hospital performance is determined by the results of iVantage Health Analytics’ Hospital Strength INDEX®, which is celebrating its tenth anniversary in 2020.

Based entirely on publicly available data, the INDEX is the industry’s most comprehensive and objective assessment of rural hospital performance. Utilizing 50 independent indicators, the INDEX assesses performance across eight pillars of performance that span market-, value- and finance-based categories. Hospitals recognized as a Top 100 facility had one of the 100 highest overall scores among all rural and community hospitals nationally.

“The Top 100 Rural & Community Hospital award program reminds us that rural providers haven’t lost touch with their mission and are committed to delivering better quality, better outcomes and better patient satisfaction. It’s a pleasure to be able to not only recognize this year’s recipients, but our larger group of top 100 alumni as we celebrate 10 years of The Hospital Strength INDEX,” said Michael Topchik, National Leader, The Chartis Center for Rural Health.

According to the American Hospital Association there are some 2,000 Rural & Community Hospitals in the United States The Knox County Hospital was also recognized in 2017, and last year received its Critical Access Hospital (CAH) designation.

The CAH designation is given to eligible rural hospitals with 25 or fewer beds by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). They must offer 24/7 emergency care and have a physician available on call at all times. They must have an RN on site at all times when acutely ill patients are in the hospital. In addition, they must be at least 35 miles from the nearest hospital.

“Facilities like ours are critical to people living in rural communities,” Kuehler said. “And to be recognized as among the top five percent of rural hospitals in the entire country is extremely gratifying.”

“We made a decision several years ago that we could innovate, expand our services, develop new revenue sources and provide enhanced health care delivery for our citizens,” Kuehler said. “I really believe people all across the country are now seeing the results of the commitment our community.”

The Knox County Hospital is operated by the Knox County Hospital District, which provides healthcare services for residents of Knox County and surrounding areas. The hospital district offers a wealth of medical services, including 24-hour emergency care, advanced radiology services, a clinical laboratory, physical therapy, patient education and more.

The District also operates two rural health clinics, an outpatient retail pharmacy, home health, emergency medical services (EMS), a nursing home and durable medical equipment (DME) services.

The other Texas hospitals on the Top 100 Rural & Community Hospital list are located in Childress, Breckenridge, Kerrville, Fredericksburg and Columbus.

Top 100 Hospital Resources: The list of this year’s Top 100 Rural & Community Hospitals as well as the INDEX methodology can be found at

To learn more about The Chartis Center for Rural Health or to speak with someone regarding the INDEX and the Top 100, please email Billy Balfour at

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