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Healthcare Access in Rural Communities – News

News stories from the past 60 days.

Nov 19, 2020 - Blog from the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) celebrates National Rural Health Day and highlights the positive things that are taking place in rural health. Features innovative efforts by states to bolster telehealth access during the COVID-19 pandemic and address rural hospital closures.
Source: National Conference of State Legislatures
Nov 19, 2020 - Blog post from Michelle Hood, executive vice president and chief operating officer of the American Hospital Association (AHA), celebrates National Rural Health Day and shares lessons learned in her role overseeing healthcare systems. Advice for healthcare leaders includes meeting patients where they are, encouraging professional development of healthcare workers, collaborating with competitors, and building community trust.
Source: American Hospital Association
Nov 17, 2020 - Blog post highlights efforts by rural hospitals to improve access to maternal care in rural communities. Solutions discussed include recruiting "home grown" healthcare providers, partnering with larger hospitals and health systems, enlisting doulas, and utilizing technology to increase access to care. Describes how these solutions partnered with policy changes help to address challenges in rural areas.
Source: American Hospital Association
Nov 3, 2020 - Sixth episode in a podcast series following a rural town in Kansas that recently lost its hospital. Features a teenager who lives with and cares for his grandparents. Discusses the prevalence of mental health issues and substance use, highlights the new community health center that provides addiction and behavioral health services. (Contains language some may find offensive).
Source: Kaiser Health News
Oct 27, 2020 - Fifth episode in a podcast series that explores Fort Scott, Kansas, a rural town whose hospital recently closed, leaving residents with little access to adequate healthcare. Features a former hospital administrator with blood cancer, who has to drive an hour and back to receive treatment now that the hospital is closed.
Source: Kaiser Health News
Oct 12, 2020 - Features Ely, Minnesota, a small town that can technically be identified as urban as it is located in the same county as the state's fourth largest city. In 2015, Ely's hospital closed its obstetrics unit due to financial concerns; discusses the impact of obstetric closures on rural communities, what can be done to curb rural obstetric closures, and the various definitions of rural.
Source: Public Health Post
Oct 7, 2020 - Provides an overview of a nationwide poll that reported one in every four households have been unable to get medical care during the COVID-19 pandemic, widening the disparities that already exist in rural communities. Describes that in rural areas, some obstacles to healthcare include high rates of uninsured residents, small healthcare workforce, and an increase of hospital closures.
Source: NPR

Last Updated: 11/20/2020