New 50-State Scan on the Non-Licensed Substance Use Disorder (SUD) Workforce

Through HRSA’s cooperative agreement with National Organizations of State and Local Officials (NOSLO), the National Academy for State Health Policy (NASHP) conducted a comprehensive 50-state scan of how each state Medicaid program pays for and oversees non-licensed SUD staff. Learn how state Medicaid agencies are developing and deploying a growing workforce of peers, counselors, and other qualified staff to supplement licensed SUD provider capacity. The report can be accessed here.

Catalog of Value-Based Initiatives for Rural Providers

This catalog summarizes programs implemented by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services that support the transition of payment models from fee-for-service to value-based care.  Updated in October 2019 by the Rural Health Value team, the catalog includes the rural impact and participation for such programs as the Medicare Diabetes Prevention Program, the Million Hearts Cardiovascular Disease Risk Reduction Model, and the Hospital Value-Based Purchasing Program. Recent catalog additions include: the Emergency Triage, Treat, and Transport Model; the Maryland Total Cost of Care Model; and Primary Cares Initiatives.

Access the catalog here:  Catalog of Value-Based Initiatives for Rural Providers.

Partial Psychiatric Hospitalization Program Availability in Nonmetropolitan and Metropolitan Hospitals Nationally

The wide range of services involved in such programs requires substantial resources that are often limited.  Researchers from the Rural and Underserved Health Research Center at the University of Kentucky found that fewer than 5 percent of nonmetropolitan hospitals offer partial psychiatric hospitalization in-house.  Click here to view the report.

Differences in Select Measures of Health Care Access, Utilization, and Financial Burden by Urbanicity, 2017

Examines healthcare access, utilization, and financial burden among adults aged 18-64 living in large metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), small MSAs, and nonmetro (rural) areas. Includes both unadjusted data and data adjusted to focus on the effects of urbanicity by accounting for potential sociodemographic or health characteristics that might impact access.
Sponsoring organization: National Center for Health Statistics
Date: 12/2019

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Characteristics of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Households: Fiscal Year 2018

Presents an overview of the SNAP Program eligibility requirements and benefit levels. Provides detailed tables showing comparisons in rural-urban areas. Reports that 16.2% of SNAP households are in rural and micropolitan areas. Coverage includes October 2017 through September 2018.
Additional links: Summary
Sponsoring organization: USDA Food and Nutrition Service
Date: 11/2019

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Characteristics of Physician Assistant Students Planning to Work in Primary Care: A National Study

Examines the predictors associated with physician assistants’ (PAs) intention to practice in primary care. Compares the characteristics of enrolled PA students intending to practice in primary care, and more likely to work in rural practice, with enrolled PAs planning to enter other specialties. Data is taken from the 2013-2014 Physician Assistant Education Association’s (PAEA) Matriculating Student Survey (MSS).
Sponsoring organizations: Center for Health Workforce Studies, University of Washington
Date: 10/2019

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UK Home to New National Center Studying Economic Impacts of Rural Health Care

Dec 2, 2019 — The new Center for Economic Analysis for Rural Health (CEARH), funded by the Federal Office of Rural Health policy, will focus on increasing awareness of the economic benefits of local health systems and their communities. Housed at the University of Kentucky (UK) College of Agriculture, Food, and Environment, CEARH will be a partnership between the UK and Oklahoma State University with the goal of producing research, response, and solutions to pressing issues facing rural communities.
Source: The Lane Report

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New Brief: Behavioral Health In Rural America: Challenges and Opportunities

The prevalence mental health and substance use diagnoses and unmet treatment needs are not equally distributed, with rural residence being one factor associated with these differences. Moreover, the rural context has proven challenging for ensuring the availability of and access to prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and recovery services in rural areas. This paper reviews the prevalence of behavioral health disorders in rural populations, rural access to behavioral health services, promising program and policy strategies targeted to improving rural BH systems, and opportunities for policy and system changes to improve rural BH systems and outcomes.

Click to download a copy: Behavioral Health In Rural America: Challenges and Opportunities

Report: Community Health Worker Roles and Responsibilities in Rural and Urban America

Growing bodies of research in public health point to community health workers (CHWs) as vital figures in ensuring cost-effective access to needed services. They are uniquely situated, often armed with cultural competence and a personal understanding of the challenges their clients face, to help clients navigate barriers and address social determinants of health. To investigate the CHW field in rural and urban environments, researchers at the Southwest Rural Health  Research Center conducted a series of focus groups in four states and report on commonalities and differences between CHWs in urban and rural areas.  Click here to read the report.

GAO Report Finds Rural Veterans Face Challenges Accessing SUD Treatment

The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) examined trends in the number of and expenditures for veterans receiving substance use disorder (SUD) services, including specialty SUD services, differences in use of services between rural and urban veterans, and the issues affecting access to those services in rural areas.  The GAO found little difference between rural and urban veterans in the use of SUD services overall; however, there were differences in the use of and access to specialty services, such as intensive outpatient services, residential rehabilitation treatment programs, and medication assisted treatment.  The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is taking steps to improve rural access issues by addressing provider shortages, transportation, availability of telehealth, and access to prescription drugs.  Click here to access the report.