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California Models and Innovations

These stories feature model programs and successful rural projects that can serve as a source of ideas. Some of the projects or programs may no longer be active. Read about the criteria and evidence-base for programs included.

Effective Examples

HEALTH-COP Obesity Prevention
Updated/reviewed August 2017
  • Need: Many physicians want to help rural children who are overweight or obese develop healthy lifestyles, and these physicians would benefit from receiving training on specific ways to instruct, motivate, and manage the healthcare of these children.
  • Intervention: A virtual learning network called Healthy Eating Active Living TeleHealth Community of Practice (HEALTH-COP) was created to educate rural physicians and provide peer support.
  • Results: Studies showed an increase in health and wellness topics covered by physicians during children's clinic visits. This likely contributed to healthier eating habits and more active lifestyles that were found when these children were reassessed 3 months later.

Promising Examples

STAIR (Skills Training in Affective and Interpersonal Regulation)
Updated/reviewed December 2017
  • Need: To increase access to telemental health services for rural women veterans with a history of trauma.
  • Intervention: STAIR (Skills Training in Affective and Interpersonal Regulation) is a 10-week program designed to reduce PTSD and depression symptoms and increase emotional regulation and social functioning in clients.
  • Results: Therapists reported that clients attended more sessions when offered via teleconferencing, and clients reported satisfaction with the program.
Felton Early Psychosis Program
Updated/reviewed November 2017
  • Need: A treatment model for those showing early signs of schizophrenia.
  • Intervention: The Felton Prevention and Recovery in Early Psychosis (PREP) program was started in rural and urban California counties. Felton PREP encourages schizophrenia remission in clients through medication and psychosocial initiatives.
  • Results: Clients’ hospitalization and psychiatric emergency room visits were reduced by 70% after 1 year of treatment. Schizophrenia symptoms also reduced significantly among Felton PREP clients.
funded by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy Healthy Outcomes Integration Team
Updated/reviewed November 2017
  • Need: To provide integrated treatment planning and coordinated healthcare services to rural residents.
  • Intervention: This program was designed to treat adults who have a serious mental health condition and those who have, or are at risk of developing, chronic health conditions.
  • Results: Thus far, 84 clients have received integrated health and mental health services.
funded by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy 4P's Plus Pregnancy Support Project
Added September 2015
  • Need: To provide pregnancy support services to Native American women who struggle with substance use.
  • Intervention: An integrated behavioral health network was implemented in Lake County, California.
  • Results: As a result of this project, fewer Native American babies were exposed to alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs.

Other Project Examples

Angel Flight West
Updated/reviewed November 2017
  • Need: Free non-emergency air travel for people of all ages with serious medical issues or other compelling needs.
  • Intervention: A network of more than 1,400 pilots donate their piloting skills, aircraft, and all costs associated with flying to help families and individuals in need in the 13 western states of the United States.
  • Results: Families are able to receive vital medical treatment and have other needs met that might not otherwise be possible because of financial, medical, or geographic limitations.
funded by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy Woodlake Family Resource Center ACA Outreach and Education Project
Updated/reviewed November 2017
  • Need: Educational assistance in understanding the Affordable Care Act’s health insurance options for Spanish-speaking uninsured residents in a rural California.
  • Intervention: A family resource center offered bilingual ACA outreach and education with referral to local health centers for enrollment assistance.
  • Results: 1,740 educational items and 480 newspapers with ACA information were distributed. Seven outreach events reached 880+ individuals, and 467 were referred for enrollment help.
funded by the Health Resources Services Administration Regional Initiatives in Dental Education (RIDE)
Updated/reviewed August 2017
  • Need: Address oral health disparities in Washington’s rural and underserved communities.
  • Intervention: The University of Washington School of Dentistry developed the Regional Initiatives in Dental Education (RIDE) program preparing dentists for practice in rural and underserved areas.
  • Results: Since the first graduating cohort in 2012, more than 70% of RIDE graduates are practicing in rural and underserved areas.
funded by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy Santa Catalina Island Healthcare Consortium
Updated/reviewed June 2017
  • Need: The Catalina Island Medical Center created a telemedicine program to bring specialty services from the mainland to the island.
  • Intervention: The Catalina Island Medical Center created a healthcare consortium to offer health services to the isolated residents of the West End and a telemedicine program to bring specialty services to Avalon.
  • Results: Through telemedicine services, residents have enrolled in diabetic education classes, received eye screenings, and telepsychiatry services.
Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Program (FVRx)
Updated/reviewed April 2017
  • Need: A tangible way for providers to increase patients' access to affordable healthy food.
  • Intervention: With the Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Program, providers prescribe vouchers for patients to redeem for fruits and vegetables at local healthy food retailers.
  • Results: Over 10,000 people have received FVRx prescriptions in rural and urban areas across 10 states.
funded by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy Reach Out Program
Updated/reviewed January 2017
  • Need: Diabetes is the most common health problem in the African American, Latino, and Native American populations of rural Lake County, California.
  • Intervention: A Promotores/Community Health Workers model is used to teach positive lifestyle habits to people of all ages in order to live healthier lives, specifically to manage or prevent Type 2 diabetes.
  • Results: Participants in the Reach Out Program have improved their habits relating to nutrition and physical activity, leading to healthier lives.
National TeleNursing Center Helps Rural Clinicians To Provide Sexual Assault Exams
Added February 2016
  • Need: Clinicians in rural areas are often unprepared to treat sexual assault victims after an assault.
  • Intervention: The National TeleNursing Center (NTC) in Massachusetts uses telemedicine to connect Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners to clinicians in remote areas, offering them guidance through examinations.
  • Results: Clinicians report that the help gives them confidence through the examination process. To date, every one of the remote sites' eligible sexual assault patients have consented to receiving help from NTC.
Recovery-Oriented System of Care (ROSOC)
Updated/reviewed January 2016
  • Need: To serve adults in Mendocino County, California with chronic substance use disorders, mental health diagnoses, and/or complex medical conditions who frequently utilize emergency departments and jail services.
  • Intervention: A safety net organization was formed that works with medical providers and law enforcement to reduce the high cost of caring for frequent utilizers through intensive care coordination activities.
  • Results: Greater overall stability in the lives of clients, with less utilization of low-efficacy, crisis-oriented services, hospitalizations, and incarcerations.

Last Updated: 12/7/2017