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Announcements from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy

May 31, 2018

What’s New

Awards for Rural Health Care Services Outreach.  FORHP’s parent agency, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) recently awarded $11,961,114 to 60 rural communities for the 2018 Rural Health Care Services Outreach Program (Outreach Program).  This three-year, community-driven program requires collaboration between three or more local providers of health and/or social services to bridge together key elements of rural health care delivery.  The incoming cohort of Outreach Program awardees have proposed projects that will strengthen the health infrastructure using evidence-based strategies that have proven effective in other rural communities.  These projects will coordinate care and outreach to address health issues specific to the local population and must demonstrate improved outcomes and sustainability.  New to this program that started in 1991, is the Health Improvement Special Project (HISP), a collaboration between HRSA, the National Center for Health Statistics and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that will use data to assess and track cardiovascular disease risk for a subset of individuals. Twelve of the new awardees will participate in this track.  To learn more about the objectives and approach of the Rural Health Care Services Outreach program, read about the projects that were funded in the 2015-2018 cohort.

New Requirements for Federal Grantees and ApplicantsIn March of this year, the U.S. General Services Administration announced actions to address fraudulent activity in its System for Award Management (SAM), which manages federally-funded grants.  At that time, GSA asked that all new organizations registering at SAM.gov submit an original notarized letter confirming identification of a grant recipient.  This requirement now applies to both new and existing entities registered with SAM.gov.  (Look for the small, red type toward the top of SAM’s home page.)

The Latest on Food InsecurityThe nonprofit Feeding America has issued its annual report on food insecurity, defined as the inability to reliably access a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food.  Researchers looked at county-level data for a “better understanding of variations in local need to help communities develop more targeted strategies to reach people struggling with hunger.”  The findings report that 79 percent of counties with the highest rates of food insecurity are rural.

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Registration Open: 2018 CMS National Training Program Workshops

May 30, 2018

CMS National Training Program Workshops – Registration is OPEN

You asked, and we listened! At the 2018 CMS National Training Program (NTP) Workshops, you can expect 2½ days of tailored training to meet a variety of learning needs. Whether you’re building a foundation of basic Medicare knowledge, or you want to expand your expertise, there’s something for everyone. You’re welcome to attend the entire 2½-day workshop, or you can choose to attend only the days that meet your varied interests and needs. Day 1 provides the basics, Day 2 has cross-cutting information including legislative and program updates, and Day 3 provides a deeper dive into more advanced topics. It will be helpful if you bring a laptop or tablet to participate in the casework activities.

The locations and dates for the workshops are listed below. You are invited to attend the location of your choice. There is no fee to attend.

REGISTER NOW

Rural Health Research & Policy Centers

May 25, 2018

View the Research Alert.

2018 Faculty Loan Repayment Program Application Now Open

May 25, 2018

Accepting applications through Thursday, June 28, 7:30 p.m. ET

Apply Here!

Apply today for the 2018 Faculty Loan Repayment Program!

The Faculty Loan Repayment Program provides individuals who have an interest in eligible health profession careers with the opportunity to receive loan repayment while serving as faculty members at accredited and eligible health professions schools.

Participants will receive up to $40,000 for two (2) years of service to repay the outstanding principal and interest of qualifying educational loans. Applicants must obtain all qualifying educational loans prior to the application deadline of June 28, 2018.

Before You Apply

Before you apply, read the annually updated Application and Program Guidance. Make sure you understand the terms and conditions of the contract.

Eligibility

To be eligible, all applicants must:

  1. Come from a disadvantaged background, based on environmental and/or economic factors,
  2. Have an eligible health professions degree or certificate, and
  3. Have an employment commitment as a faculty member at an approved health professions institution for a minimum of two years.

Application Help

Join our Faculty Loan Repayment Program Technical Assistance Call.
Thursday, June 7
3-4:30 p.m. ET
Dial-in: 1-888-889-4957
Passcode: 9769247

New funding opportunity

May 24, 2018

Access to healthy, affordable foods and beverages is essential to help all children grow up at a healthy weight. As advocates, decision-makers, and policymakers create policies and programs to promote the well-being of children, it is important to provide them with a body of evidence that shows the best approaches and strategies to improve children’s nutrition habits, dietary intake, and weight status.

Healthy Eating Research, an RWJF national research program, is funding $2.6 million toward research on actions and strategies that will help improve children’s physical, social, and emotional development through the consumption of healthy foods and beverages.

Proposals for studies that promote health equity and address disparities, such as high rates of overweight and obesity experienced by children from low-income rural and urban communities and racial and ethnic minority populations, will be prioritized.

Learn more about eligibility and an informational webinar

National Rural Grocery Summit

May 24, 2018

June 25-26, 2018
Manhattan, KS – Hilton Garden Inn
Register Now

Overview

Millions of rural residents now face limited choice and low quality in their retail food options. Significant research indicates a strong relationship between lack of access to healthy food and chronic, diet-related disease. Obesity, high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, and coronary heart disease are all associated with a lack of access to healthy foods.

An important source of healthy rural food access is the local grocery store. They are a vital source for nutrition and health, providing a supply of fresh fruits and vegetables, dairy and protein. In fact, the presence of grocery stores in rural areas has been shown to correlate with lower rates of obesity and nutrition-related disease. Unfortunately, these rural businesses struggle and it seems every day we hear about another store closing shop and shutting their doors.

Because the loss of a rural grocery store threatens the health of local citizens and the very existence of that community, Kansas State University and a broad range of partners are working to assist rural communities and their grocery stores. Toward that goal, we are proud to announce that on June 25-26, 2018 we will host the Sixth National Rural Grocery Summit at the Hilton Garden Inn in Manhattan, Kansas. At the Sixth National Rural Grocery Summit we will bring together store owners, citizen leaders, food suppliers, academic researchers, policy makers, and funders to talk with one another about how best to sustain this critical piece of community infrastructure and improve the health of our rural citizens.

Objectives

  • To provide the latest and best thinking about rural grocery stores and rural community sustainability
  • To offer a discussion around the latest models for providing healthy food access to rural communities
  • To provide a discussion regarding rural grocery best business practices
  • To provide rural grocery store owners and rural grocery stakeholders the opportunity to network and dialogue with one another about the significant issues and challenges they face
  • To chart a path forward for rural healthy food access

Announcements from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy

May 24, 2018

What’s New

Request for Proposals:  Outreach for COPD – June 8.  The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) is seeking proposals for programs that increase awareness and understanding of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, or COPD.  According to the COPD National Action Plan, this disease is a leading cause of death affecting 16 million Americans and millions more who do not know they have it.  COPD rates for rural areas are nearly double those for urban areas (8.2 versus 4.7 percent). Proposals will advance the COPD Learn More Breathe Better campaign and its aim to educate providers and patients about diagnosis and management.

Call for Abstracts:  SEARCH Telehealth Research Symposium – June 20.  The Society for Education and the Advancement of Research in Connected Health (SEARCH) is seeking abstracts for its 2018 Telehealth Research Symposium.  Submissions for podium presentations (short lecture and long lecture) and posters should focus on one or more of the following areas:  evidence-based research on connected health systems (e.g., telemedicine, telehealth, eHealth, mHealth), quality initiatives and telehealth measures, defining training programs and education, and care for seniors.  According to the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Math, telehealth drives volume, increases quality of care, and reduces the cost of health care for rural communities.

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