USDA Launches Webpage Highlighting Resources to Help Rural Communities Bridge the Broadband e-Connectivity Infrastructure Gap

WASHINGTON, Aug. 29, 2018 – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today unveiled a new webpage featuring information about the importance of rural e-Connectivity and the ways the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing to help deploy high-speed broadband infrastructure in rural America.

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Broadband and the Opioid Epidemic: Connecting Rural Communities to Hope

By Anne Hazlett, Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development, U.S. Department of Agriculture

In the hills of eastern Kentucky, Keith Gabbard is more than the general manager of a telephone company. Keith is a first responder to a growing and monumental challenge in rural America– mental health. In 2017, Keith’s company, the Peoples Rural Telephone Cooperative, provided a high speed internet connection to deliver telehealth services to veterans in McKee, Kentucky, his hometown. Through this lifesaving resource, Peoples is creating rural prosperity in its community by creating access to modern health care services.

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Rural Caregiving Challenges, Interventions and Resources

Two policy briefs released this week come from the University of Minnesota RUPRI Health Panel, part of the HRSA-supported Rural Health Research Gateway. The first brief, Perspectives on Rural Caregiving Challenges and Interventions, presents findings from key informant interviews describing challenges and opportunities related to supporting informal caregivers in rural areas. The second brief, Resources for Caregiving in Rural Communities, describes resources that are being used across the country to support caregivers in rural communities.

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Pennsylvania Rural Hospital Leader Receives National Quality Spirit Award

University Park, Pa. – Larry Baronner, rural healthsystems manager and deputy director at the Pennsylvania Office of Rural Health (PORH), received the Medicare Beneficiary Quality Improvement Project (MBQIP) Spirit Award on July 18, 2018 at a national meeting in Bethesda, Maryland, convened by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP).

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Pennsylvania Critical Access Hospital Program Receives National Recognition for Quality Improvement

University Park, Pa. – The Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP). has recognized 10 states for outstanding quality performance of their Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) in achieving the highest reporting rates and levels of improvement across the nation over the past year. The recognition was given on July 18, 2018 at a national meeting in Bethesda, Maryland, convened by FORHP. The CAH program is administered by State Offices of Rural Health; the Pennsylvania Office of Rural Health (PORH) leads the program in the state. Pennsylvania has 15 CAHs which serve the most rural communities in the state.

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The Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP) plans to award up to 75 grants to rural communities as part of a new Rural Communities Opioid Response (Planning) (RCORP) initiative in FY 18

Successful awardees will receive up to $200,000 for one-year to develop plans to implement opioid use disorder prevention, treatment, and recovery interventions designed to reduce opioid overdoses among rural populations.
The initiative will focus on the 220 counties identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as being at risk (PDF – 158 KB), as well as other high risk rural communities.

Continue reading “The Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP) plans to award up to 75 grants to rural communities as part of a new Rural Communities Opioid Response (Planning) (RCORP) initiative in FY 18”