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About Rural Health

Many factors influence health within rural communities, including individual health behaviors, community characteristics, environmental factors, accessibility of healthcare services, and the types of services delivered by governmental agencies or private and not-for-profit organizations. After conducting a needs assessment and determining the important health issues that need to be addressed, it will be necessary to learn more about the issues. The issues faced by residents of rural communities are very different than those in urban areas.


Rural residents may face disparities due to:


  • A disproportionate burden of chronic disease relative to the general public

  • Restricted access to quality health care

  • Insufficient or lack of health insurance coverage

  • Geographic isolation

  • Lack of public transportation

  • Poor infrastructure

  • Low educational attainment

  • Low health literacy

  • Poverty and unemployment

  • A smaller health care workforce and a lack of specialty care

  • Limited availability of bilingual providers and interpreter services

  • Cultural or social differences, stigma, and norms

  • All of these factors affect health and wellness in rural communities.

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