Features

In-depth stories examining key rural health issues.

Federal Agencies’ Investment in Rural Cancer Control Fosters Partnerships between Researchers and Rural Communities

hand holding a ribbon against a sunset


Researchers and rural communities are working together to address rural cancer prevention and control, with federal funding supporting a wide range of projects. From targeting health behaviors, to making cancer screening and vaccination more accessible, to increasing rural participation in clinical trials, efforts to reduce rural cancer burden are underway across the country.

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July 28, 2021

Pulmonary Rehabilitation: Benefiting Rural Individuals, Benefiting Rural Population Health

McKenzie Health System pulmonary rehabilitation staff.


On the list of leading causes of death, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, impacts millions of rural Americans and their quality of life. Though limited treatments are available for COPD, research indicates that pulmonary rehabilitation (PR) provides major benefits, yet is currently under-prescribed and facing challenges from COVID-19 and from reimbursement policies. Researchers discuss the potential that tele-PR might bring to rural areas, and rural healthcare leaders highlight the benefits of their PR programs for service areas.

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June 30, 2021

Still Stealing Rural America’s Breath: An Update on Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

image of trees shaped as lungs with text COPD: Still Stealing Rural America's Breath


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, is a condition that continues to steal rural America’s breath. Researchers, philanthropists, and healthcare professionals talk about new rural research efforts and the impact of COVID-19 on COPD. Also discussed is the importance of pulmonary rehabilitation, an impactful treatment long known to improve quality of life and now backed by new research proving it decreases death rates in select patients.

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June 16, 2021

Broadband in Rural America: Faster Speeds for Home and Healthcare

wireless router


Fast, reliable broadband is essential for people to access telehealth and patient portals as well as work and study from home, but rural and tribal areas fall behind urban and suburban areas in terms of broadband deployment and speed. Organizations in Alabama, Colorado, and Kentucky share how broadband affects their work and their patients’ care.

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April 28, 2021

Looking at the Rural Homelessness Experience: Definitions, Data, and Solutions


Though often considered an urban problem, homelessness also affects rural individuals and families, impacting their health and well-being. A Vermont nonprofit leader shares her organization’s work using the evidence-based solution Housing First and reminds us that for many, homelessness is just “one catastrophic event away.”

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April 7, 2021

Rural Registered Nurses: Stories of Caring for Their Communities

composite photo of five rural nurses


Nurses are an integral part of the rural healthcare workforce. Registered nurses from across the country share their stories about their path to nursing, their accomplishments, and how they provide healthcare in their rural communities.

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November 10, 2020

One Health: Bringing Health to Humans, Animals, and the Environment

CDC One Health infographic


Wondering about animal-to-human diseases? Or human medical conditions related to the environment? Federal experts join health educators to talk about how understanding a One Health approach for human, animal, and environmental health can be helpful for rural healthcare organizations.

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October 14, 2020

Contact Tracing: Training New Workers and Connecting with Rural Residents

Contact tracers at the Whiteriver Indian Hospital.


Contact tracing is an important step in preventing further spread of the coronavirus. Alaska’s AHEC program, a center for public health in Washington, and a national public health foundation share their training strategies while an IHS hospital in Arizona discusses its in-person contact tracing initiative.

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September 9, 2020