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Rural Health
Resources by Topic: Rural definitions

What is Rural?
Provides an overview of the different ways the federal government describes areas as rural. Discusses confusion that can arise from multiple definitions of rural areas. Compares how different urban-rural designations classify each county in South Carolina.
Author(s): Samantha Renaud, Kevin Bennett
Date: 08/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: South Carolina Center for Rural and Primary Healthcare
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Three Levels of Rural Definition at FORHP
County-level map showing urban counties, selected metropolitan rural-urban commuting areas (RUCAs) 2 and 3, metropolitan RUCAs 4 and higher, and nonmetropolitan counties, according to definitions used by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP).
Date: 08/2020
Type: Map/Mapping System
Sponsoring organization: The Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research
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Details on HHS' Distribution of Emergency Funds to Hospitals with High COVID-19 Admissions and Rural Providers
An overview of the methodologies the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services used to distribute COVID-19-related funding to hospitals with high numbers of COVID-19 admissions, rural hospitals, Critical Access Hospitals, Rural Health Clinics, and health centers. Includes a comparison of the terms and conditions of the different CARES Act funding programs.
Date: 05/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: American Hospital Association
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Considerations for Defining Rural Places in Health Policies and Programs
Highlights key questions to be considered when evaluating a definition of rural that is most appropriate for a specific policy or program. Discusses the principles needed to drive rural definitions and the current challenges of changing rural definitions. Provides an overview of common rural definitions in use, and offers options for the development of new definitions and adjustments to current definitions.
Author(s): Keith J. Mueller, Andrew F. Coburn, Alana Knudson, Jennifer P. Lundblad, A. Clinton MacKinney, et al.
Date: 05/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Rural Policy Research Institute Rural Health Panel
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Rates of Living Alone by Rurality and Age
Identifies the percentage rates of adults living alone and within specific age groups using two classifications of rurality: the U.S. Census Bureau definition for rural and urban, and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) definition for metropolitan/non-metropolitan county.
Author(s): Carrie Henning-Smith, Jonathan Schroeder, Mariana S Tuttle
Date: 04/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center
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North Dakota County Classification
Map of North Dakota displaying counties by rural, semi-rural, and urban classification.
Date: 02/2020
Type: Map/Mapping System
Sponsoring organization: University of North Dakota Center for Rural Health
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Including Rural Populations in Research
Presents a video discussing the importance of researchers to include rural populations and rural programs in their healthcare research in order to achieve health equity and eliminate health disparities.
Author(s): Kristine Sande
Date: 02/2020
Type: Video/Multimedia
Sponsoring organization: Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute
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Using Data to Define Rural Populations
Offers a step-by-step guide for developing a rural community baseline dataset, and identifies links to helpful resources and existing datasets, with the intent to help State Offices of Rural Health (SORH) focus on the demographics influencing health and the health needs of the rural communities within their state.
Date: 02/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health
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U.S. Census 2020: Engagement Opportunities for Rural Health Stakeholders
Discusses the U.S. Census Bureau's set of "Hard-to-Count" target areas for the 2020 census that include rural census tracts. Identifies ways in which rural stakeholders can use this information to engage healthcare providers in census support activities.
Citation: NOSORH Issue Brief, 2(3)
Date: 01/2020
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health
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Oklahoma: 2020 Core Based Statistical Areas and Counties
Map identifying the metropolitan, micropolitan, and non-Core Based Statistical Areas (CBSA) in Oklahoma using 2020 Census data.
Date: 2020
Type: Map/Mapping System
Sponsoring organization: U.S. Census Bureau
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