Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Wonderment Wednesday: IT'S NATIONAL RURAL HEALTH DAY.....tomorrow!

Happy Wednesday folks!
We don't know if you know, but tomorrow is National Rural Health Day! At the South Carolina Rural Health Research Center we are so excited for tomorrow we can hardly contain ourselves.

We understand National Rural Health Day is a fairly new industry holiday day of celebration, which is why you should click on this link to get great ideas on how to celebrate National Rural Health Day. While it isn't a federal holiday just yet, keep holding your breathes, because we're in the process of lobbying for it to become a federal holiday. Like any good holiday, we here at the South Carolina Rural Health Research Center believe we give you a in a gift of rural health knowledge on

5 New Things About Rural That We Have Learned About In This Past Year Illustrated With GIFs To Celebrate National Rural Health Day

1. Free Clinics Are Much Rarer In Rural Counties 

Free clinics are incredibly helpful for populations that are disadvantaged and lack health insurance. Rural populations typically lack health insurance, which leads to poor health outcomes. For this reason, free clinics are quite an asset for disadvantaged populations. The problem is, as this link shows, only 22% of free clinics are located in rural areas. Obviously, this does not bode well for America's rural population.

2. 30 Day Readmission Rates Are Higher Among Dual Eligibles. But There Is A Silver Lining For Rural Dual Eligibles. 

If you are an elderly person living in with Medicare and Medicaid as your insurance, then you are a dual eligible. It also means that the odds are in your favor. According to this link, you are less likely to have a 30 day readmission than Medicare only rural residents. All this means that while rural residents are less healthy, a dual eligible resident is less likely to go back to the hospital if they do end up going.

3. Rural Medicare Residents were less likely to receive post-discharge inpatient rehabilitation care after stroke because they live too far

One of the things that is constantly highlighted by the South Carolina Rural Health Research Center is the lack of healthcare access for rural residents. This is due in large part to the amount of driving that a rural resident needs to do to reach a healthcare facility. According to this link, rural medicare residents were less likely to receive post-discharge rehabilitation care after a stroke because they lived too far. When they did receive care, rural residents drove an average of 18.6 miles versus 8-12.6 of an urban resident. 

4. Not All Deprived Rural Counties Are

In a study looking at looking at health outcomes among children, it was found that while many rural counties were sicker than other counties. It suggested that not all rural counties were sick. According to  this link some counties are actually better off than urban counties when looking at health outcomes. 

5. But When A Rural County Is Deprived, It Is Much Worse Off

This good news come with a tidbit. When looking further into the same evidence that produced the previous point, this policy brief revealed a major detail. When comparing a deprived urban county with similar characteristics to a deprived rural county with similar characteristics, the rural county was impacted worse than the urban county.
As you can see, most of the news from rural health is bad news. This only marks the need for more help in rural areas. Only you can make a difference for people in rural by writing to your legislature for policy change.

In the meantime, remember to give a nice tap on that subscribe button to the very bottom or top left hand side of this page to read more about the South Carolina Rural Health Research Center. See you next week, same place, same time.

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