Federal Office of Rural Health Policy Announcement

June 4, 2020

Awards for Delta States Rural Development Network. The Federal Office of Rural Health Policy awarded approximately $12 million to 12 awardees for the 2020 Delta States Rural Development Network Program.  This three-year program will support organizations located in the eight Delta States (Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee) to promote the planning, implementation, and development of health care networks at the community level. These health care networks consist of partner organizations working together to address unmet local health needs and health disparities in the rural Delta region.

HHS Makes Awards to Combat COVID-19 in Rural Tribal Communities.  The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) awarded $15 million to 52 Tribes, Tribal organizations, urban Indian health organizations, and other health services providers to Tribes across 20 states to prepare, prevent, and respond to COVID-19 in rural tribal communities. 

HHS Makes Awards to Expand the Addiction Workforce On Tuesday, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) awarded $20.3 million to 44 recipients to increase the number of fellows at accredited addiction medicine and addiction psychiatry fellowship programs. The awardees will train addiction specialists at facilities in high need communities that integrate behavioral and primary care services. Addiction specialists have the knowledge and skills to provide comprehensive behavioral healthcare to under-served populations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

TRACIE Report on COVID-19 Challenges to Rural Health.  The Technical Resources, Assistance Center, and Information Exchange (TRACIE) is a site created by the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response at the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.  In this report, TRACIE explains and provides data for pandemic challenges specific to rural populations and health care facilities.  More information and resources for emergency preparation and response can be found on the TRACIE website. 

GAO: Infection Control Deficiencies in Nursing Homes Before the Pandemic.  The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for Congress.  For this report, the GAO found that about 40 percent of surveyed nursing homes had infection prevention and control deficiencies from 2013 to 2019.

ARHQ: Hospital Burden of Opioid-Related Inpatient Stays.  The Agency for Healthcare Research Quality (AHRQ) examines the costs of opioid-related hospitalizations, with a comparison of metropolitan and rural hospitals.  The report is part of AHRQs Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project, a collection of data and analysis tools to enable research on a broad range of health policy issues.

Learning About Local Health Workforce Through Commute Patterns.  To learn more about the available supply of nurses and allied health workers at local levels, researchers at the University of Washington Center for Health Workforce Studies looked at commute patterns found in the American Community Survey.  The report says a key takeaway for researchers and workforce planners is a need to measure local supply based not only on where people report working, but also where they live. 

Federal Office of Rural Health Policy FAQs for COVID-19.  A set of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) from our grantees and stakeholders, updated regularly. 

COVID-19 FAQs and Funding for HRSA Programs.  Find all funding and frequently asked questions for programs administered by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).

CDC COVID-19 Updates.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides daily updates and guidance, and ongoing Clinician Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA).

Confirmed COVID-19 Cases, Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Counties.  The RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis provides up-to-date data and maps on rural and urban confirmed cases throughout the United States.  An animated map shows the progression of cases beginning January 21.

Rural Response to Coronavirus Disease 2019.  The Rural Health Information Hub has created a guide to help you learn about activities underway to address COVID-19.