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Rural Health
Resources by Topic: Infrastructure

Report: Understanding Disaster Resiliency Factors for Broadband Deployments
Highlights broadband infrastructure vulnerabilities at the census block level related to natural disasters. Discusses unserved and underserved areas as well as 2 rural focused case studies. Makes recommendations to policymakers for a more resilient broadband infrastructure. Includes the Broadband Climate Risk Mitigation Tool for county and census block data.
Date: 08/2023
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Center on Rural Innovation
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A Descriptive Study of Covid-Era Movers to the Northern Forest Region
Discusses citizen relocation to the northern forest region, consisting of counties in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and New York. Describes motivations for relocation during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as opportunities for outdoor recreation and access to rural spaces.
Author(s): Jess Carson, Sarah Boege, Libby Schwaner
Date: 08/2023
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Carsey School of Public Policy
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Contextualizing Physical Activity in Rural Adults: Do Relationships Between Income Inequality, Neighborhood Environments, and Physical Activity Exist?
Examines a selection of rural southern counties to see how social determinants of health (SDOH) are related to physical activity. Utilizes data from an August 2020-March 2021 telephone survey to analyze physical activity in 334 respondents by sex, race, income, obesity status, marriage status, as well as rates of income inequality, social cohesion, and walkability of community.
Author(s): Samuel L. K. Baxter, Giselle Corbie, Sarah F. Griffin
Citation: Health Services Research, 58(S2), 238-247
Date: 08/2023
Type: Document
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An Active Roadmap: Best Practices in Rural Mobility
Provides a literature review and cases studies related to the ways rural communities encourage health-focused infrastructure, multimodal transportation, economic development, and environmentally safe practices. Describes the typology and demographics of rural areas and discusses how transportation is linked to wellness and community health outcomes.
Date: 07/2023
Type: Document
Sponsoring organizations: Smart Growth America, The National Complete Streets Coalition
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Developing a National-Scale Exposure Index for Combined Environmental Hazards and Social Stressors and Applications to the Environmental Influences on Child Health Outcomes (ECHO) Cohort
Discusses the process of building an index to assess environmental hazards and social stressors on pregnancy. Utilizes factors such as pollution, lack of green space, social economic status, social vulnerability, race/ethnicity, metro versus non-metro location, and more to define exposure risk.
Author(s): Sheena E. Martenies, Mingyu Zhang, Anne E. Corrigan, et al.
Citation: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 20(14), 6339
Date: 07/2023
Type: Document
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Delivery of High-Speed Broadband Services in Unserved and Underserved Areas of the Commonwealth (Pennsylvania): Fourth Annual Report
Provides an update on the role of broadband in education, telehealth, agriculture, and community and economic development; barriers to development; funding resources; developments in Pennsylvania state and local initiatives; and efforts to identify unserved and underserved Pennsylvania communities. Includes a discussion of the Pennsylvania Broadband Development Authority and new federal funding for expansion and development in Pennsylvania.
Additional links: Summary
Author(s): Yvonne Llewellyn Hursh, Lydia Hack, Allison N. Kobzowicz, Bryan W. DeWalt, Wendy L. Baker
Date: 07/2023
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Joint State Government Commission, General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
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Advancing Economic Development in Persistent-Poverty Communities
Examines census tracts to identify areas of "persistent poverty," defined as an area with at least a 20% poverty rate for at least 30 years. Discusses the distribution of the persistently poor population between rural and urban areas and highlights specific regions such as the Southeast, Tribal areas, and Appalachia. Outlines contributors to persistent poverty including workforce development, lack of infrastructure, race and ethnicity, economic conditions, and more. Presents 4 case studies, including 2 rural studies, to highlight overall themes and make recommendations for improving conditions in persistently poor locations. Interactive map provides information and data on persistent poverty counties.
Additional links: Executive Summary, Interactive Map
Author(s): August Benzow, Kenan Fikri, Joanne Kim, Daniel Newman
Date: 06/2023
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Economic Innovation Group
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How a Black Community Brought Affordable Health Care and Clean Water to Rural South Carolina in the 1970s
Reports on a predominately Black rural community in South Carolina that worked together to provide indoor plumbing, build a health center, and improve health outcomes of their citizens in the 1970s.
Author(s): Olivia Lewis
Date: 06/2023
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: National Association of Community Health Centers
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The Built Environment and Social and Emotional Support among Rural Older Adults: The Case for Social Infrastructure and Attention to Ethnoracial Differences
Evaluated 110,850 rural older adults to determine the connection between social infrastructure and social and emotional support (SaES). Looks for variance across race and ethnicity and discusses the implication for mental health.
Author(s): Danielle Rhubart, Jennifer Kowalkowski, Logan Wincott
Citation: Rural Sociology 88(3), 731-762
Date: 05/2023
Type: Document
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Maximizing New Federal Investments in Broadband for Rural America
Policy brief covering the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment program with recommendations for stakeholders on how to close the digital divide for rural America. Discusses transparency and accountability, capacity building and community engagement, and implementation.
Author(s): Anthony F. Pipa, Laura Landes, Zoe Swarzenski
Date: 05/2023
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: The Brookings Institution
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