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Rural Health
Resources by Topic: Community and economic development

Community Impact and Benefit Activities of Critical Access, Other Rural, and Urban Hospitals, 2018
Examines the economic and healthcare benefit of Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) on rural communities. Looks at services provided, economic health of CAHs, and the effect this has on their communities broadly. Includes national and state-level comparisons of service indicators provided by CAHs and other rural and urban hospitals.
Author(s): Zachariah Croll, John Gale, Connor Huggins
Date: 05/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Flex Monitoring Team
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AARP Rural Livability Workshop Report
Report describing rural community characteristics with a focus on rural elders. Discusses rural demographics, community dynamics, public spaces, housing transportation, economy, healthy living, broadband access, and disaster readiness.
Author(s): Melissa Stanton, Patricia Oh
Date: 04/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: AARP
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In Search of "Good" Rural Data: Measuring Rural Prosperity
Discusses the availability of data on rural communities, including economic, health, demographic, and geographic data, and issues that make rural data collection and reporting difficult. Compares 22 datasets, exploring what makes data collection difficult and what makes specific datasets challenging to work with. Addresses methods of locating good information in existing datasets, as well as steps toward improving data access.
Author(s): Corianne Payton Scally, Eric Burnstein, Matthew Gerken, Evelyn Immonen
Date: 04/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organizations: Aspen Institute, Housing Assistance Council, Urban Institute
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2020 NACo Legislative Conference: Rural Grants 101: How County Officials Can Tap Into USDA Programs
Audio recording of National Association of Counties (NACo) panel discussion presented on March 2, 2020 in Washington, DC, describing ways in which counties can access USDA funding programs. Topics include rural electric cooperatives, rural telecommunications, and rural water and wastewater systems. Transcript available by clicking the dots above the Subscribe tab, then selecting Open Transcript.
Date: 03/2020
Type: Audio
Sponsoring organization: National Association of Counties
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Understanding the True State of Connectivity in America
Provides an overview of the TestIT mobile app, developed to study cellular and broadband internet services, and the data collected from app users. Examines download speeds by county compared to Federal Communications Commission (FCC) standards. Discusses challenges rural and underserved communities with a limited broadband infrastructure face, including economic development, education and workforce development, and access to health and human services.
Date: 02/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organizations: Farm Credit, Land O'Lakes, National Association of Counties, National Association of Development Organizations, Rural Community Assistance Partnership, Rural Local Initiatives Support Corporation
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Wellness Funds: Flexible Funding to Advance the Health of Communities
Issue brief describing key issues in conceptualizing, developing, and implementing Wellness Funds. Offers policy opportunities for funders to advance the model for aligning community resources. Includes case examples from Washington state, California, and rural Vermont.
Author(s): Janet Heinrich, Jeffrey Levi, Dora Hughes, Helen Mittmann
Date: 02/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Funders Forum on Accountable Health
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Alternative Drinking Water Systems: Use by Very Small Communities, Related Cost Savings, and Technical Assistance Provided by EPA and USDA
Provides an overview of 5 alternative drinking water systems used by communities with fewer than 500 people and the barriers to implementing new systems and technologies in small communities. Describes factors that influence the costs and cost-savings of alternative drinking water systems. Identifies 4 federal funding programs that support technical assistance and training for small drinking water systems serving communities of fewer than 10,000 people.
Additional links: Full Report
Date: 01/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Government Accountability Office
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Ten-Year Reflections on the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps
Discussion of how data, evidence, guidance, and examples used in County Health Rankings & Roadmaps publications from January 2009 - January 2019 have helped communities improve the conditions in which their residents live. Examines how the methodology has changed over time, and includes a section on how the researchers adapted their methods so as to appropriately analyze data from rural areas with small populations.
Author(s): Bridget Booske Catlin, Willems Van Dijk
Date: 2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organizations: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute
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Innovations in the Food System: Exploring the Future of Food
Summarizes presentations and discussions from an August 7-8, 2019 workshop held in Washington, D.C. Reviews the status of current and emerging knowledge concerning innovations for modern food systems and strategies for meeting future needs. Addresses different perspectives on food systems and includes a presentation on food system linkages to rural economic development.
Additional links: Read Online
Author(s): Food and Nutrition Board
Date: 2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Health and Medicine Division (HMD), National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
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America's Rental Housing 2020
Report details rental housing access across the country. Looks at supply and demand of rental housing, as well as the cost of renting for various income earners. Highlights the barriers to affordable rental housing in rural communities.
Date: 2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University
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