- KFF COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor: February 2021
- USDA Invites Comments on Final Rule to Expand Broadband Access in Rural America Under the ReConnect Program
- USDA Invests $42 Million in Distance Learning and Telemedicine Infrastructure to Improve Education and Health Outcomes
- Rural Death Rate from COVID-19 Falls by a Third
- Data-Driven Initiative Drives Down Disparities in Rural Health Care
- To Vaccinate Veterans, Health Care Workers Must Cross Mountains, Plains and Tundra
- Report: 10 Western States See Some Drug Overdoses Deaths Increase by Nearly 100%
- COVID-19 Is Pushing Struggling Rural Hospitals to the Brink
- COVID-19 Converges with the Opioid Epidemic: Challenges for Pregnant and Postpartum Women with Opioid Use Disorder
- Rural Hospital Remains Entrenched in COVID 'War' Even Amid Vaccine Rollout
- USDA Implements Immediate Measures to Help Rural Residents, Businesses and Communities Affected by COVID-19
- Biden Administration Announces Actions to Expand COVID-19 Testing
- Expanding Testing on Reservations
- Rural COVID-19 Cases Drop While Rural Death Rate Holds Steady
- 2021 Special Enrollment Period for Marketplace Coverage Starts on HealthCare.gov Monday, February 15
At President Trump’s direction, and building on its recent historic efforts to help the U.S. healthcare system manage the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services today issued another round of sweeping regulatory waivers and rule changes to deliver expanded care to the nation’s seniors and provide flexibility to the healthcare system as America reopens. These changes include making it easier for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries to get tested for COVID-19 and continuing CMS’s efforts to further expand beneficiaries’ access to telehealth services.
The Pennsylvania Coalition of Oral Health (PCOH) has been recognized by the Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors (ASTDD) as an example of the best practice approach to State and Territorial Oral Health Programs and Collaborative Partnerships. We are proud to share the story of the origins and evolution of PCOH into the thriving coalition that it is today. Thank you to our stakeholders, old and new, for your contributions to this success.
The American Dental Association (ADA) has released their “Return to Work Interim Guidance Toolkit.” The interim guidance recommends measures to take to help protect patients, staff, and dentists from COVID-19 as dental practices re-engage in providing the full range of oral health care. The toolkit will be updated regularly.
The Pennsylvania Coalition for Oral Health (PCOH) is pleased to announce the recipients of grants totaling $153,250 in the inaugural round of our Community Water Fluoridation (CWF) Equipment Grant Program. The CWF Equipment Grant Program issues grant funds to community water systems wishing to initiate, update, or expand the basic public health practice of community water fluoridation. By supporting the public health measure of water fluoridation, PCOH seeks to improve the overall health and well-being of Pennsylvanians served by community water systems. Congratulations to each of the grantees! PCOH is honored to support the work that water systems are doing throughout PA to provide optimally fluoridated water to their residents.
The awardees are:
- Erie Water Works
- Downington Municipal Water Authority
- Harrison Township Water Authority
- Greenville Water Authority
- Reading Area Water Authority
- Sewickley Water Authority
- Shippensburg Borough Authority
This program is funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Health through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under Grant NU58DP006467: Using Surveillance Data and Evidence-based Interventions to Improve Oral Health Outcomes in Pennsylvania and administered by PCOH.
The American Hospital Association (AHA) highlights a rural California’s plan to prepare for a potential surge related to the COVID-19 pandemic, including steps taken to provide care through community outreach and maintain financial support.
An hour-long YouTube video brings frontline information for rural providers and hospitals addressing COVID-19, hosted in partnership between Kansas Patients and Providers Engaged in Prevention Research (KPPEPR) and High Plains Research Network (HPRN) of Colorado.
Living alone is associated with higher risk of social isolation and poor health for populations without access to appropriate support and resources. Little is known about how rates of living alone vary by rurality, however. In this infographic, the University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center identifies rates of living alone for all adults and within specific age groups using two classifications of rurality. The report can be accessed here.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides daily updates and guidance. New this week is a set of guidelines for meat and poultry processing workers and employers. CDC also does regular clinical calls for public health emergency response, called Clinician Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA).
As Pennsylvania works to mitigate the spread of the 2019 novel coronavirus, the Wolf Administration has made it a priority to address food insecurity in the commonwealth by protecting our local supply chain, advocating for necessary waivers and resources, and ensuring equal access to healthy food for all.
Pennsylvania is home to a strong and diverse agriculture and food industry, with a reputation for innovation and generosity, that creates a strong foundation for food security in the commonwealth. Ensuring Pennsylvanians have equal access to food is a critical piece of a large, complex puzzle.
First Lady Frances Wolf has called for healthy Pennsylvanians to consider volunteering to help those who need it, reminding them to follow all safety precautions while doing so.
Learn more about Food Security in Pennsylvania:
The U.S. unemployment rate is still on an upward trend, with roughly 30.3 million Americans now having lost their jobs since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, despite the fact that some states have already begun to selectively reopen businesses. Today, WalletHub released updated rankings for the States with the Biggest Increases in Unemployment Due to the Coronavirus as a follow-up to our report on the Cities with the Biggest Growth in Unemployment Due to COVID-19, along with accompanying videos.
To identify which states’ workforces have been hurt most by COVID-19, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia based on increases in unemployment claims. We used this data to rank the most impacted states in both the latest week for which we have data (April 20) and overall since the beginning of the coronavirus crisis (March 16). Below, you can see highlights from the report, along with a WalletHub Q&A. To see the states most impacted since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, click here.
Increase in Pennsylvania Unemployment Due to Coronavirus (1=Worst, 25=Avg.):
- 1,010.96% Increase in Unemployment Claims (April 2020 vs April 2019)
- 131,282 the week of April 20, 2020 vs 11,817 the week of April 22, 2019
- 12th lowest increase in the U.S.
- 380.92% Increase in the Number of Unemployment Claims (April 2020 vs January 2020)
- 131,282 the week of April 20, 2020 vs 27,298 the week of January 1, 2020
- 8th lowest increase in the U.S.
- 2,337.93% Increase in Unemployment Claims Since Pandemic Started
- 1,620,512 between the week of March 16, 2020 and the week of April 20, 2020 vs 69,314 between the week of March 18, 2019 and the week of April 22, 2019
- 20th lowest increase in the U.S.
To view the full report and your state’s rank, please visit: