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Rural Health Disparities News

News stories from the past 60 days.

'People Are Literally Being Poisoned': How Sewage Problems in Alabama Got So Bad -- and Why Other States Should Worry
Jul 17, 2018 - Discusses the lack of waste disposal infrastructure in Alabama and the discovery that a number of rural residents whose homes are not attached to municipal sewer systems may have tropical diseases. Touches on the barriers to addressing the infrastructure problem, including problems faced by people who do have septic systems or who are attached to the sewer system. Also references other places with similar problems related to waste disposal infrastructure, including Native American reservations, where fewer than half of homes are connected to sewers. What these areas have in common is that they tend to already be poor and populated by members of marginalized groups.
Source: Governing
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CDC: More Obesity in U.S. Rural Counties than in Urban Counties
Jun 14, 2018 - Press release from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on their Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), which found that obesity prevalence was significantly higher among adults living in rural counties than among those living in metropolitan counties. Includes some discussion of the health risks of obesity, steps rural communities can employ to address this disparity, and the CDC's High Obesity Program (HOP).
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
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Health Equity Data Access Program
Jun 7, 2018 - The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Office of Minority Health (OMH) is supporting three "seats" in the CMS Virtual Research Data Center (VRDC) to assist researchers in gaining access to CMS restricted data for minority health research. Awardees will gain access to CMS data to conduct health services research focusing on minority populations. This announcement seeks brief project narratives for specific applied research projects that relate to creative and innovative methods for using CMS data to identify, document, assess, and evaluate health disparities among Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries. Applications must be submitted by June 16, 2018.
Source: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
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Rural America Has Too Few Dentists — and Too Few Patients Who Can Pay
Jun 7, 2018 - Discusses oral health needs and disparities in rural America, focusing on a rural town in West Virginia. Although things like workforce shortages and preventive services either being reimbursed at low rates or not being covered at all by Medicaid or Medicare can contribute to the problem, this also touches on the economic realities of rural America and how difficult it can be to afford care even when it is accessible. (May require subscription to view full article.)
Source: The Washington Post
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Last Updated: 7/17/2018