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Rural Health
Top Stories

Top news stories from the past 60 days. For more, see news by topic or news by state.

Oct 14, 2021 - Reports on rural COVID-19 infections and mortality for the week of October 3-9, noting that the rural infection rate was still much higher than the metropolitan rate but that new infections fell around 12% during the week. Offers charts with weekly infection and mortality data, state rural/metro comparisons, and county and state-level data maps.
Source: The Daily Yonder
Oct 13, 2021 - Video report on nursing shortages and the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on those shortages, focusing on the rural Hendry Regional Medical Center in Clewiston, Florida. Offers perspectives of nurses and emergency department leadership, and addresses burnout related to COVID-19 patient care and the role of traveling nurses in filling staffing needs.
Source: PBS News Hour
Oct 12, 2021 - Describes updated guidance from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services regarding interstate licensure compacts, which are an area of ongoing policy change in relation to expanding telehealth services for Medicare enrollees. Notes that CMS will recognize licenses obtained through compacts as valid.
Source: mHealth Intelligence
Oct 12, 2021 - Reports on rural COVID-19 vaccinations as of October 7, noting a sustained decline in new vaccinations. Notes that 42.6% of the total rural population has completed vaccination, compared to 54.5% of the metro population. Offers county and state-level data maps and charts depicting vaccination trends.
Source: The Daily Yonder
Oct 8, 2021 - Analyzes COVID case and death data to identify racial and ethnic disparities and how those disparities may be changing over time. Includes a discussion of COVID trends in rural areas.
Source: Kaiser Family Foundation
Oct 8, 2021 - Discusses the new Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine, which is located in a small town in Oklahoma. Operated as a collaboration between OSU and the Cherokee Nation, it is the first tribally affiliated medical school in the United States. The school will focus on producing physicians to practice in rural and tribal communities.
Source: Scripps Media via KJRH-TV
Oct 7, 2021 - Reports on rural COVID-19 infection and mortality rates for the week of September 26-October 2, noting a second consecutive week of decline for new rural infections and a decline in COVID-19 related deaths. Offers a county-level data map, charts of COVID-19 rates by metro and nonmetro status over time, and state-by-state comparisons.
Source: The Daily Yonder
Oct 7, 2021 - Reports on studies of telehealth in rural and urban areas during the COVID-19 pandemic, focusing on mental healthcare telehealth visits. Notes that studies found rural populations used telehealth to access mental healthcare at lower rates than in urban areas, and describes issues of technological capability and broadband access.
Source: Health Affairs Blog
Oct 4, 2021 - Reports on rural COVID-19 vaccination rates as of September 30, noting a 20% decrease in new rural vaccinations and nearly a 1/3 decrease in metropolitan counties. Notes that 42.1% of the rural population and 54% of the metro population were fully vaccinated as of September 30. Offers a map with county-level data, charts tracking vaccination rates over time, and state-by-state rural and metro comparisons.
Source: The Daily Yonder
Sep 30, 2021 - Reports on rural disparities in COVID-19 mortality, finding that in September 2021, rural death rates were double those of urban areas. Discusses the impacts of health disparities and workforce shortages on rural COVID-19 challenges, as well as the burden to rural hospitals and issues with transferring patients to larger hospitals for specialized care.
Source: Kaiser Health News

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