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Highlighting the Work of Rural Health Departments During National Public Health Week

Apr 07, 2023 | Mackenzie Galloway

It is Day 5 of National Public Health Week! Today, we celebrate and highlight the services and needs of rural health departments in the US.

Rural health departments in the US provide essential services and health care to 19.3% of the population. Departments delivering these services in rural settings face unique challenges, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, including workforce shortages, limited access to specialty services, and economic constraints.1

Public Health AmeriCorps and NACCHO are working to support local health departments by increasing placements of AmeriCorps members into local health settings. The goal of this initiative is to provide streamlined capacity building to local health departments, meanwhile creating a pipeline of qualified public health professionals from AmeriCorps membership to full time positions.

Health departments have the opportunity to host AmeriCorps members or become direct grantees. With either route, AmeriCorps members can serve in several high-demand roles, such as:

  • Recovery coaches to help individuals overcome opioid addiction, provide drug abuse prevention and education, build capacity of treatment and recovery organizations, support safe disposal of prescription drugs, and more.2
  • Community liaisons to develop partnerships with non-profits, community-based organizations, and others to promote healthcare access, housing, emergency management, and more.2
  • Clinical support to strengthen access, expand capacity, and provide educational and support services.2

If you represent a local health department and would like to find out more about hosting an AmeriCorps member, please fill out this brief form. We will follow up with you to connect you to the resources and information you need to get started.

Read more about how Public Health AmeriCorps is strengthening the public health workforce here: AmeriCorps Hopes to Breathe Life into Public Health Workforce

Sources
National Rural Health Association. 2023. About Rural Health Care. Retrieved April 5, 2023 from https://www.ruralhealth.us/about-nrha/about-rural-health-care.

Public Health AmeriCorps. 2023. Public Health AmeriCorps | About | What We Do. Retrieved April 5, 2023 from https://www.americorps.gov/about/what-we-do/public-health-americorps.


About Mackenzie Galloway

More posts by Mackenzie Galloway

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