Allowable Investments Search Tool

In general, SHIP allowable investments include activities to assist small rural hospitals with their quality improvement efforts and with their adaptation to changing payment systems through investments in hardware, software and related trainings. This includes aiding with value and quality improvement.

Unallowable investments include, but are not limited to, travel costs, hospital services, hospital staff salaries, or general supplies. Hospitals should contact their State Office of Rural Health (SORH) with questions regarding the appropriateness or fit of a certain activity or hardware/software purchase. For additional clarifications, refer to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

This tool classifies a number of example investment activities as Allowable, Unallowable, or PO Pre-Approval. This is not a comprehensive list. It is only intended to provide examples of allowable SHIP activities.

Transferring Unused SHIP Funds to Another Participating Hospital
Unallowable

Unused SHIP funds cannot be transferred to another participating hospital.

Provider-Based Clinic Quality Measures Education/Training
Allowable
Value-Based Purchasing (VBP) Investment

Education/training for provider-based rural health clinic quality improvement reporting, including patient satisfaction survey scores, is allowable.

ICD-10 Training
Allowable
Payment Bundling (PB)

Any training to support coding and reimbursement, documentation, or documentation improvements that result in increased coding compliance are allowable.

Billing and Coding Training
Allowable
Value-Based Purchasing (VBP) Investment

Billing and Coding training for employees working in an RHC and/or provider-based primary care clinics are allowable if the practices are owned by a critical access hospital (CAH).

Voice Recognition System for Dictation
Allowable
Payment Bundling (PB)

Voice recognition system for dictation to support increased quality, efficiency, and/or coding is an allowable use of SHIP funds.

340B Drug Pricing Program Training
Allowable
Payment Bundling (PB)

A 340B Drug Pricing Program training intended to increase efficiency or quality improvement in support of Prospective Bundling and Prospective Payment Systems initiatives is an allowable investment.

Contractor Travel and Lodging Expenses
Allowable
Accountable Care Organization (ACO)

Travel and lodging fees for contractors to get to a SHIP training can be covered. The hospital or network should request an invoice with all related training fees (including time, travel, and lodging) bundled as one single deliverable.

NOTE: SHIP Guidance doesn't approve travel for hospitals and state offices.

Printers, Labels, Printer Wiring, Printer Ink and Toner
Unallowable

Printers and/or printing supplies and hardware that are not explicitly being used to promote remote services are not an allowable use of SHIP funds.

Isolation Areas
Allowable
SHIP ARP COVID-19 Testing & Mitigation

Alterations and renovations that do not qualify as construction to create isolation areas for potential COVID-19 patients

Surface Renovations
Allowable
SHIP ARP COVID-19 Testing & Mitigation

Alterations and renovations that do not qualify as construction to update surfaces to more sanitary materials to mitigate COVID-19

Automation
Allowable
SHIP ARP COVID-19 Testing & Mitigation

Addition of automated doors, sinks, toilets, soap dispensers, etc. for the purpose of COVID-19 mitigation.

Negative Pressure Spaces
Allowable
SHIP ARP COVID-19 Testing & Mitigation

Creating negative pressure spaces within common spaces (such as waiting rooms and bathrooms), or in rooms to treat COVID-19 positive patients.

Construction (for COVID-19)
Unallowable
SHIP ARP COVID-19 Testing & Mitigation

Construction costs, including, but are not necessarily limited to permanent building additions, new permanent buildings, permanent building expansions, modular buildings (and installations), increasing the footprint of the facility, significant new ground disturbance, and projects with a total cost of $500,000 or more.  

This project is/was supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant number UB1RH24206, Information Services to Rural Hospital Flexibility Program Grantees, $1,560,000 (0% financed with nongovernmental sources). This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.