Training Criteria & Guidelines

In 2018, the Georgia General Assembly implemented a training requirement for rural hospital executives, board members, and hospital authority members. The legislation, HB 769, delegated responsibility for the creation of training standards, approval of vendors, and monitoring of compliance to the Georgia Rural Health Innovation Center.

The Georgia Rural Health Innovation Center at Mercer University School of Medicine is making available the final hospital training standards and is currently soliciting applications for curriculum approval. A full web portal for submissions will launch soon with additional resources.


Questions? Please contact us at or 478-301-4700.

FAQ For Hospitals, Executives, and Board Members

Q: Who is required to receive training?

A: In accordance with O.C.G.A. § 31-2-16 training approved by the Center must be completed by “the chief executive officer, the chief financial officer, every board member, and every hospital authority member, if operated by a hospital authority pursuant to Article 4 of Chapter 7 of this title, of a rural hospital organization as defined in Code Section 31-8-9.1”. The Center has published a list of all affected organizations to clarify the requirement.

Q: Who will provide the training?

A: The Center is currently seeking applications from vendors who wish to offer training. We anticipate 3-4 vendors this year. Once vendors are approved, their names and contact information will be published on our website.

Q: How much will training cost?

A: Costs for training have not been established but will be made publicly available on the Center website. The Center will take cost into account when granting approval to vendors in an effort to minimize the financial impact on the end consumer.

Q: What is the deadline for receiving training?

A: Those required to receive training must complete a minimum of 8 hours (2 hours prior to service and 6 hours within one year of joining the organization) prior to December 31, 2020. Trainee must receive an additional 6 hours of training every 2 calendar years after first joining the board to remain in compliance.

Q: If I received similar training previously will that count toward this requirement?

A: No. Previous training from a vendor who was not, at the time, approved will not count toward this requirement.

FAQ For Vendors

Q: How do I obtain approval?

A: The center will soon launch a submission portal for vendors to apply for approval. The portal will include an application form and several required uploads as described in the Guidelines and Standards document.

Q: I already offer similar training. Do I need approval?

A: Yes. For training to fulfill the requirements set forth by the state of Georgia, a conforming curriculum that already exists must still be approved by the Center.

Q: My training is accredited by another organization. Do I still need approval from the GRHIC?

A: Yes. The Georgia Rural Health Innovation Center is the only entity designated by the state of Georgia to approve curriculum that fulfills the training requirement.

Q: Is there a fee associated with approval?

A: Yes. A fee of $1,000 is assessed on all applications. Funds from this fee are used to pay independent reviewers who evaluate the curriculum’s compliance with the Standards.

Q: How long does it take to receive approval?

A: The Approval Process is designed to move very rapidly. We expect all applications to be reviewed and a determination returned to the vendor no more than 30 days after submission, although most will be processed much more quickly.