Virginia 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.
Updated/reviewed February 2020
- Need: Healthcare access for the medically underserved in Central Appalachia.
- Intervention: A mobile clinic that provides free healthcare in 11 rural Virginia communities.
- Results: The Health Wagon provides comprehensive healthcare services to over 4,000 patients annually.
Updated/reviewed July 2018
- Need: To provide palliative care to patients with stage 4 cancer.
- Intervention: The Emily Couric Clinical Cancer Center in Charlottesville, Virginia, has implemented a three-part program to help these patients manage their symptoms.
- Results: The Proactive Palliative Care and Palliative Radiation Model enrolled 646 patients during its three-year funding period of 2012-2015.
Other Project Examples
Updated/reviewed April 2020
- Need: Low rates of immunization and a lack of knowledge about physical health among school age children in the rural areas of Nelson County, Virginia.
- Intervention: A School Nurse Program placed a registered nurse in each of the four county public schools to track and encourage immunization compliance, provide health education, and handle students' daily health issues.
- Results: School-age children are having many of their minor health concerns addressed throughout the day by registered nurses at school. Compliance for childhood immunizations is now extremely high.
Updated/reviewed January 2020
- Need: To decrease illicit drug and alcohol use in the Central Appalachian region of Kentucky, where many schools had no type of prevention curriculum.
- Intervention: Using engaging simulations and presentations, the project delivers substance abuse prevention education to middle school and high school students.
- Results: Post-test surveys show that thousands of students are reached through the "On the Move!" project and gain positive knowledge on the dangers of substance abuse.
Updated/reviewed January 2020
- Need: To educate people in the rural parts of Virginia who either have diabetes or are considered at high risk for developing it.
- Intervention: Teleconferencing technology is used to offer diabetes education programs to people with diabetes or those at high risk for developing it and health professional training in endocrinology and lifestyle behavior changes.
- Results: Participants reported better prevention techniques and/or self-management of diabetes after being thoroughly educated about this condition.
Updated/reviewed December 2019
- Need: Decrease hospital readmissions and emergency room visits for patients in rural Tidewater, Virginia.
- Intervention: After inpatient admission or ER visit, identify at-risk patients to offer enrollment in remote monitoring and disease self-management education and coaching, with a special focus on behavioral health wellness.
- Results: Decreased readmissions and ER visits paired with high patient satisfaction scores.
Added December 2019
- Need: Suicide among veterans has been steadily increasing, and rural veterans have a 20% increased risk of death by suicide compared to urban veterans.
- Intervention: A program called Together With Veterans was formed to help rural communities address and prevent suicides among veterans. The initiative is veteran-led, collaborative, evidence-based, and community-centered.
- Results: The program is currently in 6 states and reaches over 1,500 veterans every quarter while nurturing connections between agencies and community members.
Updated/reviewed September 2019
- Need: To help veterans transition into civilian healthcare careers.
- Intervention: MMAC and healthcare employers in urban and rural Virginia provide employment and education opportunities to veterans seeking civilian medical credentials.
- Results: MMAC has accepted 543 applicants into the program, 155 of whom have already found employment via the MMAC program.
Updated/reviewed September 2018
- Need: Increase behavioral health services and providers in rural Appalachian communities of Southwest Virginia.
- Intervention: Implementing a behavioral health internship that is a partnership of 2 universities and a community health center, with infrastructure to also support a social work internship.
- Results: Behavioral health services now available in the 7-county area served by the health center, with designated behavioral health staff to supervise psychology and social work interns.
Last Updated: 4/7/2020