NASHVILLE (AP) - National and state health care organizations are calling on TennCare officials to immediately end a moratorium on special payments to rural clinics.

The Tennessean reports , the moratorium began more than a year ago. It was supposed to last six months but has since been extended twice. Some clinics that were counting on the payments are facing the real possibility of closing.

TennCare spokeswoman Sarah Tanksley said the moratorium is necessary to create new billing rules for the state's approximately 150 rural clinics.

But Bill Finerfrock, executive director of the National Association of Rural Health Clinics, said it should not take this long.

He told the paper, "Forty-nine other states have figured out how to do this and do not have the same kinds of issues."

Information from: The Tennessean,

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.