Sole Community Hospitals (SCH)

A hospital that meets the requirements to be an SCH as determined by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is considered to be an SCH under TRICARE.

SCHs include hospitals that are geographically isolated, serving a population relying on that hospital for most inpatient care, certain small hospitals isolated by local topography or periods of extreme weather.

In general, an SCH is:

  • At least 35 miles or more from another “like" hospital or
  • Between 25 and 35 miles from another “like” hospital and meets other criteria such as bed-size and a certain number of inpatient admissions

The TRICARE program SCH Policy can be found in TRICARE Reimbursement Manual, Chapter 14, Section 1