Topics: Health conditions

Diagnosing the Rural COPD Patient: Ask About Symptoms, Use Spirometry

3.5 million people living in rural counties have been diagnosed with COPD


The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute calculates that 3.5 million rural Americans have COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. It’s also estimated that hundreds of thousands of rural Americans have the condition and don’t know it. Though it is a condition without a cure, it is a condition with hope. The COPD Foundation’s Chief Science Officer and a State Captain share how asking questions and doing spirometry can help diagnose the condition.

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November 20, 2019

Office-Based Spirometry: Key to Diagnosing Rural COPD Patients

graphic depicting spirometry process


Chronic obstructive lung disease, or COPD, is a disease with a stronghold in rural America: almost double the prevalence and double the mortality rates compared to large urban areas. Though it is a condition with no cure, it’s a condition that has treatments — and hope — making proper diagnosis by spirometry imperative.

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November 20, 2019

Preventing Farmer Suicides through Helplines and Farm Visits

Meg Moynihan, Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) Senior Advisor of Strategy & Innovation, on her organic dairy farm. Photograph by Cory Ryan, courtesy of UMN School of Public Health


Difficult economic conditions have caused many farmers to experience high levels of stress and a sense of hopelessness about saving their business and way of life. The Minnesota Farm & Rural Helpline and NY FarmNet are working to improve farmers’ mental health and prevent suicides.

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May 15, 2019

Rural Patients with Chronic Disease: A Nonprofit Organization and a Health Department Leverage Federal Funding to Provide Health Education and Care Coordination

remote patient imaging dashboard


An Alabama nonprofit organization and a North Carolina rural health district share how they leverage public funding for quality improvement and rural network development activities that provide unique patient education opportunities for chronic disease prevention and self-management.

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February 20, 2019

Eye Health Needs: Preserving the Eyesight of Rural and Underserved Populations

child getting eye exam, image source: National Eye Institute


Rural Americans of all ages often go without eye healthcare, a gap that has obvious consequences: blindness and low vision. National associations and an FQHC administrator talk about how rural vision care can be improved to increase quality of life and prevent disability in rural patients.

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January 9, 2019