November 2014 Newsletter

Mark Your Calendars!

We know you are busy and your calendar fills up fast. So we want to make sure you get the 32nd Annual Oregon Rural Health Conference on your calendar now!

2015 Oregon Rural Health Conference
October 28-30, 2015
Salishan Spa and Gold Resort
Gleneden Beach, OR

We are currently in the planning stages and will get you more information in early 2015. Until then, please feel free to peruse the presentations from this year's conference.

Thank you for your continued support!

Governor John Kitzhaber, MD, proclaims November 20, 2014 Oregon Rural Health Day


Governor Kitzhaber declared Oregon Rural Health Day to promote and celebrate the contributions of rural Oregon, the innovation of health care providers and workers in our rural communities and to join the nationwide celebration recognizing the unique contributions of America’s rural communities.

“There are 59.5 million Americans who live in rural communities,” says Scott Ekblad, director of the Oregon Office of Rural Health (ORH). “36% of Oregonians live in rural communities. They are helping to lead the way in health care reform, develop CCO models that work for rural communities, and create community solutions to address health care challenges.”

“It is an exciting time to be a health care provider in rural Oregon,” says Julie Hoffer, ORH Workforce Services Specialist. “There is so much going on with health care reform and so much opportunity for rural providers to have a big impact. Our new providers tell us that being able to be active in their communities is one of the biggest reasons they practice rural.”

What are you and your community doing to celebrate Oregon Rural Health Day? The easiest start is to say thank you to your providers and those that work in your local health care setting. But don’t stop there – this is a great opportunity to work with kids in your community to understand how they might become a health care provider, or hold a forum in your community to talk about health care issues. “Don’t let it end on November 20th,” says Mr. Ekblad. “Make every day Rural Health Day in your community.”

If you would like more ideas on how you can celebrate, contact Robert Duehmig, ORH Deputy Director, at .

Join the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH) on November 20th for a series of free webinars that focus on health care in rural America. Sessions include: Growing Families Strong: Protecting the People who Feed America; Rural Health 101, States & Communities at Work; The ACA and You; and more!

Oregon Rural Health Leader Receives National Accolades

Scott Ekblad, Director of the Oregon State Office of Rural Health, received the 2014 Distinguished Service Award from the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH). Mr. Ekblad received his award at a ceremony on October 28th during the organization’s annual conference in Omaha, NE.

NOSORH serves as an influential voice for rural health concerns and promotes a healthy rural America through state and community leadership. NOSORH leads National Rural Health Day efforts on November 20th to recognize rural communities as wonderful places to live and work, as well as raise awareness of their unique healthcare needs. The organization presents its Distinguished Service Award to a NOSORH member who has made an outstanding contribution to the organization and is actively involved in a State Office of Rural Health.

“Mr. Ekblad has taken on many leadership roles and put in many hours of hard and thoughtful work on behalf of the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health, 3RNET, and other related state and national organizations,” says Teryl Eisinger, NOSORH Director. “He is a wise leader and always there to serve the organization and others in a careful, thoughtful way. He has truly made a significant contribution to NOSORH, not just as past president, but also working with, supporting and encouraging staff from other State Offices of Rural Health across the country.”

Funding Opportunities

The Rural Assistance Center (RAC) was developed by the US Department of Health & Human Resources as a rural health and human services “information portal.” The RAC helps rural communities and other rural stakeholders access the full range of available programs, funding, and research that can enable them to provide quality health and human services to rural residents. You can find additional resources on the RAC website.