Federal Office of Rural Health Policy Announcements

Date: October 7, 2021

HRSA Payment Program for Buprenorphine-Trained Clinicians. In June of this year, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) launched an effort to improve access to substance use disorder treatment by paying for clinicians who are cleared to prescribe buprenorphine, a medication used to treat opioid use disorder. Rural Health Clinics still have the opportunity to apply for a $3,000 payment for each clinician who trained to obtain the waiver necessary to prescribe buprenorphine after January 1, 2019. Approximately $1.5 million in program funding remains available for RHCs and will be paid on a first-come, first-served basis until funds are exhausted. Send questions to Data2000WaiverPayments@hrsa.gov. There is ongoing availability of a free online course for waiver eligibility training from the American Osteopathic Academy of Addiction Medicine and the Providers Clinical Support System.

CDC Seeking Public Input on Work-Related Stress for Health Workers – Comment by November 26. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention seeks information on best practices and promising practices for the positive mental health and well-being of health workers. The feedback will be used to inform interventions under development by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. 

CDC’s COVIDVaxView: A Data Dashboard. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) launched an interactive tool for exploring data on COVID-19 vaccination coverage, uptake, and intention by a variety of different factors, including urban, suburban, and rural location. The data supplement the CDC’s COVID Data Tracker

GAO on FCC Efforts to Map Broadband Scarcity. In 2020, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) was tasked with collecting data on the availability of broadband services across the U.S.  For this report, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) interviewed stakeholders at the state and local levels to find challenges for the FCC, which include conflicting and missing data.