Rural Healthcare Workforce – Models and Innovations
These stories feature model programs and successful rural projects that can serve
as a source of ideas and provide lessons others have learned. Some of the projects
or programs may no longer be active. Read about the
criteria and evidence-base for programs included.
Need: To support rural veterans pursuing a career in nursing.
Intervention: The INVITE program improved the curriculum and reworked admission requirements to better support veteran students' experiences in the College of St. Scholastica undergraduate nursing program.
Results: The number of veterans pursuing nursing has more than doubled since program implementation, and all students have reported an increased interest in serving rural communities.
Need: To increase recruitment and retention of health professionals in rural western North Carolina.
Intervention: The Mountain Area Health Education Center (MAHEC) Rural Fellowship offers mentorship, education, research support, and community-building opportunities for local providers in their first year of practice.
Results: Of the 30 fellows who have completed the program since 2017, 97% are still practicing in rural areas; 87% are still practicing in rural western North Carolina.
Need: The shortage of mental health professionals in rural South Carolina resulted in an influx of patients admitted to emergency departments who were in need of psychiatric care.
Intervention: South Carolina Department of Mental Health (SCDMH) partnered with The Duke Endowment to create the SCDMH Emergency Department Telepsychiatry Program. Rural emergency departments can now reach a psychiatrist to assess a patient via telehealth.
Results: The program has improved access, affordability, and provided quality care for rural providers and patients with mental illness.
Need: A way to recognize Mississippi healthcare professionals and medical students for their rural-specific experience and expertise.
Intervention: The Mississippi Rural Health Association created a certification that recognizes rural health experience and also fosters a greater understanding of rural-specific policies, regulations, and needs in the healthcare field.
Results: Fellowship recipients receive statewide recognition for the time and dedication they have put into improving rural health in Mississippi.