RWHC Overview


44  years of providing affordable and effective services to rural healthcare organizations.
RWHC is owned and operated by forty-four, rural acute, general medical-surgical hospitals. The Cooperative's emphasis on developing a collaborative network among both freestanding and system affiliated rural hospitals distinguishes it from alternative approaches. In 1996, RWHC created a non-voting Affiliate Membership for specialty provider based systems.

More About Us...

  • One Page Summary of RWHC (PDF)
  • Vision, Mission and Strategic Priorities
  • Core Values The RWHC core values as we work internally, board and staff alike, as well as when we work with our external strategic partners and customers are: Trust, Collaboration, Creativity, Excellence, Pride, Openness, Individual Development, Productivity, Responsibility.
  • Our Values in Action These “guideposts” were collaboratively developed by all RWHC staff in May 2016, as a way of furthering the values of our organization and holding ourselves accountable to what is important in our shared workplace.

RWHC Overview

Incorporated in 1979 as the Rural Wisconsin Hospital Cooperative, RWHC has received national recognition as one of the country's earliest and most successful models for networking among rural hospitals. Today, the work continues as the renamed Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative responds to the needs of its diverse members and their communities.

Our Vision is that Rural Wisconsin communities will be the healthiest in America.
Our Mission is to be a strong and innovative cooperative of diversified rural hospitals and to be the “rural advocate of choice” for our Members.

RWHC serves as a catalyst for statewide collaboration and a progressive, creative force on behalf of all rural health constituencies. Owned by non-profit, rural acute, general medical-surgical hospitals, RWHC’s charge is twofold: advocacy for rural health at the State and Federal levels and shared service development for member hospitals as well as external customers. The Core Values of trust, collaboration, creativity, excellence, pride, openness, individual development, productivity, and responsibility continue to define the work of RWHC and its members.

RWHC’s advocacy agenda is as follows:

  1. Equitable Medicare/Medicaid Funding
  2. Health Plan Network Adequacy
  3. Rural Relevant “Volume to Value” Incentives
  4.  Avoiding Rural Collateral Damage as Giants Battle
  5. The Needed Statewide Workforce
  6. Physician/Staff Engagement/Retention
  7. The Effective Use of All Caregivers
  8. Rural Economic & Community Growth

The tenants of advocacy and shared services have benefited one another over the years. Since its inception, RWHC has maintained a philosophy of “Bigger Isn’t Better, Better is Better,” working collaboratively to represent the smaller rural hospital arena as an important stakeholder at the policymaker’s table. Initiatives from Federal Critical Access Hospital Designation through Rural Health Information Technology have benefited from RWHC’s expertise in crafting rural health policy. Today, that expertise continues to shape the landscape of rural health services in America.

Shared services have grown through collaborative efforts and continue to provide sustainable alternatives to our rural partners both in Wisconsin and around the country. At the heart of RWHC services is the commitment to be an affordable and effective option for rural health organizations in the areas of quality improvement, health plan contracting, credentialing, health information technology, professional and workforce development and regulatory compliance. RWHC’s business model gives us the opportunity to deliver services that are innovative and reliable, yet affordable for the smaller hospital. With over 40 years of experience, RWHC continues to be recognized as a leader providing shared services to smaller hospitals.

RWHC Commentaries & Papers

  • The Midwest Farm Report broadcast Friday a wide ranging interview with Marie Barry, RWHC Director of Community Economic Development; there is a lot packed into the 9 minute interview by Charitee Seebecker : click here for interview podcast. An excellent compendium of rural hospital issues and successes.
  • "Growing Trust",  A Commentary by Tim Size, RWHC Executive Director - January, 2024
  • "RWHC Receives International Recognition" – Newsletter of the The International Health Co-operative Organization (IHCO) a specialized organization of the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA) - October, 2003
  • "Seeing Green" - October, 1995                                  

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+1 608-643-2343

Email address:


880 Independence Ln, Sauk City, WI 53583

2024 by RWHC, Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative