The Missouri Office of Rural Health and Primary Care (ORHPC) enhances equitable access to health care services to rural and underserved populations and communities. The ORHPC is dedicated to improving the health status of Missouri residents in rural and underserved areas. The ORHPC works closely with local health advocates on a variety of community development activities designed to increase access to quality health care services and improve the health status of Missourians.

The ORHPC focuses on decreasing health disparities and increasing health equity in Missouri, by:

  • Focusing efforts on increasing access to quality health care services in Missouri’s rural and underserved areas.
  • Maximizing available resources to assist Missouri’s underserved communities, hospitals, clinics and providers in strengthening rural health care delivery systems.
  • Collaborating with partners to implement strategies and create impactful outcomes.
  • Addressing social determinants of health as a primary approach to achieving health equity.
  • Implementing programs in efforts to increase the health care workforce in health care professional shortage areas.

The ORHPC provides funding and engages in technical assistance efforts, such as community-based needs assessments; assists in the developing of viable primary care services in communities to increase access to health care services; assists rural providers, hospitals, and communities by providing information and innovative approaches to rural health services delivery, and provides training opportunities as identified by the Missouri providers and communities. The ORHPC addresses the health disparities, access to care problems, and deficiencies requiring innovative initiatives, collaboration, and partnerships. To advance these efforts, the ORHPC develops strategies to increase health equity and access by utilizing state and federal grants.

The ORHPC administers federal grants and state programs aimed at rural health and primary care initiatives to increase access to quality health care services. The ORHPC increases the health care workforce in health care professional shortage areas, targets health improvements in rural and underserved areas, and sustains valuable partnerships to implement strategies and create impactful outcomes. The ORHPC works among influential partnerships to identify the obstacles and needs faced by health care providers and patients in rural areas.

Sara Davenport, MS, LSSGB
Chief, Office of Rural Health and Primary Care

Qurizma St. Clair
Lead Administrative Support Assistant

Shirley Murphy, MPH
Rural Health Office Manager

Ashlee Griffin
Rural Health Office Coordinator

Diana Winder, MPA
Rural Health Office Coordinator

Aleesha Jones, BS
Primary Care Office Manager

Deetrilynn Galbreath, MBA
Workforce Development Program Manager

Christen Easter, BS
Primary Care Specialist

Nathan James, BS
Primary Care Coordinator

welcome to Missouri sign

ORHPC Grants, Programs, and Initiatives

Missouri Office of Rural Health (MORH) Missouri Primary Care Office (PCO) PCO: Missouri Student Loan and Loan Repayment Programs
State Office of Rural Health (SORH) Grant Primary Care Office (PCO) Grant Missouri Student Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) Grant
Small Rural Hospital Improvement Program (SHIP) Grant J-1 Visa/State 30 Waiver Program Nurse Student Loan (NSL) Program
Medicare Rural Hospital Flexibility (Flex) Grant Program National Interest Waiver (NIW) Program Nurse Loan Repayment Program (NLRP)
One-Time Grants (3):
COVID SHIP Testing/Mitigation
CDC: Health Disparities
One-Time Grants (2):
CDC: ELC Grant
Primary Care Resource Initiative for Missouri (PRIMO) Program
MORH Contracts: 154 Rural Primary Care Physician Grant Program Faculty Preceptors Tax Credit PCO Contracts: 341

Through ORHPC’s MORH and PCO, the ORHPC administers the following grants and programs:

  1. State Office or Rural Health (SORH) Grant
  2. Small Hospital Improvement Program (SHIP) grant
  3. Medicare Rural Hospital Flexibility (FLEX) grant
  4. Primary Care Office (PCO) Grant
  5. Student Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) Grant
  6. Nurse Student Loan (NSL) Program
  7. Nurse Loan Repayment Program (NLRP)
  8. Primary Care Resource Initiative for Missouri (PRIMO) program
  9. Delta Dental Grant
  10. J-1Visa/State 30 Waiver Program
  11. National Interest Waiver Program
  12. Rural Primary Care Physician Grant Program
  13. Faculty Preceptors Tax Credit Program
  15. CDC Health Disparities Grant
  16. CDC – DHSS ELC Grant: MPCA and MIC contracts

Missouri Office of Rural Health (MORH)

The Missouri Office of Rural Health (MORPH) assumes a leadership role in collaborating and contracting with state and federal agencies, universities, private interest groups, communities, foundations and local health centers to develop rural health initiatives. The MORH collaborates with partners to maximize the use of existing resources to assist Missouri’s rural hospitals and clinics with financial and operational improvements; providing resources and services in order to make evidenced based decisions. The MORH manages federally funded grants and multiple programs within each grant, specifically designed to strengthen the viability of rural health care providers, hospitals and clinics, while improving their quality of health care services.

Primary Care Office (PCO)

The Missouri Primary Care Office (PCO) collaborates closely on a variety of recruitment activities, working closely with health care partners, providers, and communities to improve access to health care for Missouri underserved areas. The PCO aims to improve access to comprehensive primary care services for underserved and rural populations by increasing the health care workforce availability to meet the needs of the Missouri underserved populations. The PCO supports and enhances health systems programming to optimize effectiveness and eliminate health disparities. Access to quality preventive and primary care services remains central to improving the health status of Missourians. The PCO efforts are vital to ensuring that actions are undertaken related to the availability of primary care services for Missourians. The PCO collaborates with various state and federal organizations, coordinates activities in the state related to the delivery of primary care services, and supports facilitation of the recruitment and retention of health care providers.