Reports from the Exploring Strategies to Improve Health and Equity in Rural Communities project

The NORC Walsh Center for Rural Health Analysis is pleased to share the final report and a series of practice briefs from the Exploring Strategies to Improve Health and Equity in Rural Communities project. These documents are the result of a one-year formative research project exploring rural strengths, cross-sector partners, cultural and historical assets, and opportunities for action to improve health and equity in rural communities. We welcome and would appreciate wide dissemination of these materials through your networks and established dissemination channels. Please let us know if we can support you in doing so.

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The National Quality Forum (NQF) is Excited to Release a New Rural Health Report

The National Quality Forum (NQF) is excited to release the following rural health report: A Core Set of Rural-Relevant Measures and Improving Access to Care. This report highlights the work of the NQF-convened Measure Applications Partnership (MAP) workgroup regarding the best available quality measures and recommendations for improving access for the rural population.

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2017 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates released today

Median household incomes Pennsylvania increased to $59,195 in 2017, up 2% from 2016 according to the latest estimates from U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey. The 2017 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates provide data on a variety of economic and demographic subjects for areas with populations of 65,000 or more.

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Homelessness in the Commonwealth

A new report from our Research Assistant Intern, Brian Summersgill, highlights trends in homelessness throughout the Commonwealth in 2017 with HUD’s Point-in-Time (PIT) counts. The data show that while Pennsylvania’s homeless population has decreased in the past five years, its rank relative to other states and Washington D.C. climbed from 10th to 7th highest. The latest point-in-time counts suggest a homeless population of just over 14,000 persons in Pennsylvania.

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Insuring Rural America: Health Insurance Challenges and Opportunities

Authors: Keith J. Mueller, Charlie Alfero, Andrew Coburn, Jennifer Lundblad, A. Clinton MacKinney, Timothy McBride and Guest Author – Abigail Barker

Current U.S. policy utilizes various market-based models within Medicare, Medicaid, and Health Insurance Marketplaces to ensure access to health insurance coverage, but access is increasingly uneven and unaffordable, especially in some rural areas.

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Update: Independently Owned Pharmacy Closures in Rural America 2003-2018

Authors: Abiodun Salako, MPH; Fred Ullrich, BA; Keith J. Mueller, PhD

Over the last 16 years, 1,231 independently owned rural pharmacies (16.1%) in the United States have closed. The most drastic decline occurred in the immediate period following the implementation of Medicare Part D – between 2007 and 2009. This decline has continued through 2018, although at a slower rate. Six hundred and thirty rural communities that had at least one retail (independent, chain, or franchise) pharmacy in March 2003 had no retail pharmacy in March 2018.

Click to download a copy: Update: Independently Owned Pharmacy Closures in Rural America 2003-2018