Federal Office of Rural Health Policy Updates

October 15, 2020

HRSA Releases 2019-2020 Report on Health Equity. The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) released a report on health equity across the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, health equity is achieved when no one is disadvantaged from achieving their full health potential because of social position or other socially determined circumstances. 

CDC: Motor Vehicle Traffic Death Rates Among Adolescents and Young Adults Aged 15–24. A new data brief from the CDC reports that motor vehicle traffic (MVT) deaths generally declined between 2000 and 2018, but rates were about twice as high in rural than urban areas for both males and females.

CDC: Increase in Drug Overdose Deaths Involving Cocaine. In a separate brief, the CDC reports that, between 2009 and 2018, the rate of overdose deaths involving cocaine rose significantly across all age groups, gender identities, and racial/ethnic categories. The overdose death rate in 2018 involving cocaine with concurrent use of opioids was triple the rate of those without any concurrent opioid use. Among all regions of the country—Northeast, Midwest, South, and West—rates were significantly lower in rural counties than in urban counties; however, the rate in Northeastern rural counties was about triple the rates of Midwestern, Southern, and Western rural counties.