MRDP Annual Conference

August 31, 2017

Just a reminder that our annual conference and meeting is coming up quickly!  If you haven’t registered, please do so soon as space is limited.  If you will be bringing your check with you, you can send in your registration form with a notation that the check is coming. Please share with anyone that you think may be interested in attending.  I’m excited to see that we have a number of non-MRDP folks attending!

View the registration form.

Announcements from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy

August 31, 2017

What’s New

AHRQ Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report.  The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) issued its annual report, mandated by Congress, providing a comprehensive overview of the quality of health care received in the U.S. and disparities experienced by different racial and socioeconomic groups.  In addition to trends and changes in disparities over time, the report looks at initiatives across the country demonstrating quality improvement for vulnerable populations.  For example, Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) is a telehealth-based program jointly funded by federal and state government agencies and private partners that provides medical education and access to specialty treatment in rural and underserved areas.

Funding Opportunities

HRSA Forecasts $2 Billion for FY2018.  The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), the HHS agency that houses FORHP, has forecasted around 40 funding opportunities for Fiscal Year 2018.  This includes approximately 765 expected awards and nearly $2 billion in potential funding to cities, states, and local community-based organizations.  HRSA is the primary agency for improving health care to people who are geographically isolated and medically vulnerable, with bureaus that focus on primary care through health centers, the health workforce, HIV/AIDS, organ donation and transplantation, maternal and child health, and rural health.  To help evaluate grant applications submitted by rural organizations, our office is always looking for qualified reviewers with expertise in social, cultural and health care issues of rural populations. Grant application review is a process that most often takes three days or less over internet and phone and non-federal grant reviewers receive an honorarium.

Students to Service (S2S) Loan Repayment Program – October 19.  The National Health Service Corp (NHSC) is now accepting applications for their 2018 Students to Service Loan Repayment Program. The S2S awards up to $120,000 to medical and dental students in their final year of school in return for a commitment to provide primary care services full-time for at least 3 years at an approved NHSC site in an underserved rural, tribal or urban area. One in every four NHSC clinicians serves in a rural community.  For more information, review the 2018 Application and Program Guidance and attend an informational webinar for applicants on Thursday, September 7 at 7:00 pm ET.

Continue reading “Announcements from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy”

Transitions in Care Among Rural Residents

August 30, 2017

The South Carolina Rural Health Research Center at the Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina is pleased to announce the release of “Transitions in Care Among Rural Residents with Congestive Heart Failure, Acute Myocardial Infarction, and Pneumonia.”  This report is available on our website or can be accessed  through the link below.

Questions pertaining to this brief should be directed to:
Kevin Bennett, PhD
South Carolina Rural Health Research Center
Phone: 803.251.6317

Save the Date: Upcoming September 2017 National Provider Calls for PQRS and Physician Compare

August 30, 2017

Save the Date
September 2017 National Provider Calls for PQRS and Physician Compare

Save the Date:  Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS): Feedback Reports and Informal Review Process for PY 2016 Results Call on September 26, 2017.  Please see the following link for more information and registration: AND

Save the Date: Physician Compare National Provider Call on September 28, 2017.  Please see the following link for more information and registration:

REMINDER: Rural Health Grants Webinar Series (LINK TO RECORDED SESSION)

August 29, 2017

The Health Resources and Services Administration, Office of Regional Operations–Kansas City, invites you to a Rural Health Grants Webinar Series: “Understanding the How, the Where, the Resources”.  The goal of this free webinar series is to educate potential applicants about HRSA programs and resources, the federal grant application process, federal and state funding opportunities, as well as important tips, resources, and training opportunities to drive a successful grant application.

Session #3:      State Funding Opportunities to Support Rural Health
Recording & handouts available at   

 Session #4:      Vision, Design and Capacity Grant Writing Trainings / Office of Minority Health Resource Center
Monday, August 28th / 10am – 11am CT

Session #5:      Creating a Competitive Proposal
Tuesday, September 19th / 9:30am – 11am CT


Session #6:      How to Work with Foundations
Monday, September 25th / 10:00am – 11:30am CT

To register for any of the sessions, go to:

Enroll in the Chronic Pain Management ECHO

August 29, 2017

Show-Me ECHO at the University of Missouri is offering an educational program to improve care for patients with chronic pain.  The Chronic Pain Management ECHO integrates medical, pharmacological, psychological and physical therapy solutions into the treatment of patients in rural and underserved urban settings.

ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) uses videoconferencing to connect an interdisciplinary team of specialists with primary care providers.  They collaborate in case-based learning sessions to help primary care providers develop advanced skills and best practices, which in turn increases the availability and quality of patient care.

Enrollment is occurring now for sessions that will begin September 7 and will be held every other Thursday from Noon to 1:00 p.m.  Register now and learn more by visiting  No cost CME for health care professionals is available.

Enroll in the Impact Asthma ECHO

August 29, 2017

The Missouri Telehealth Network and Show-Me ECHO are kicking off a new Impact Asthma ECHO season.  The Impact Asthma ECHO provides expert support for your asthma patients in a virtual learning network with asthma specialists from across the state.

For four consecutive weeks participants will meet on Tuesdays from Noon to 1:30 p.m. to learn about:

  • Monitoring Asthma Risk and Impairment,
  • Applying Best Practices,
  • Assessing and Managing Environmental Triggers, and
  • Engaging Preventive Asthma Services

Enrollment is occurring now for sessions that will begin September 5.  Register now and learn more by visiting  Sessions are free and open to all primary care team members.