2022 Oregon Rural Health Hero of the Year Award

The Hero of the Year award honors a person, an organization, or a community that has made a distinguished, unique, or exceptional contribution to improving the quality of life for rural Oregonians. Past recipients have shown extraordinary leadership under trying circumstances, or have demonstrated a lifelong commitment to inspiring rural youth to take up careers in healthcare.

Learn more here.

2022 Oregon Rural Health Conference Banner

Oregon Rural Health Conference

The annual Oregon Rural Health Conference is the largest gathering in Oregon dedicated to sharing information and showcasing innovative approaches to health and the delivery of health care in rural Oregon. The conference brings together providers, administrators, consumers, policy makers and others to exchange ideas and share expertise.

The 2022 Conference will be held October 12-14 in Sunriver. More details coming soon!

Covid Resources

COVID Resources

We recognize that information related to COVID-19 changes daily, if not hourly. We are committed to providing you—our rural health facilities and services—with the most up-to-date information we have from vetted sources to address your questions. We will keep this webpage updated with the most current information we have as it evolves.

All ORH Webinars are listed below. For specific webinars, please use these links:
Forum on Aging Webinars | Quality Webinars |RHC Webinars

Providing Specialized, Emergency Care to an Aging Rural Oregon Population Through Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation

November 18, 2021

Older adults require specialized emergency care, especially in rural communities. Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital, a Critical Access Hospital in Lincoln City, Oregon, has committed to delivering appropriate, safe, patient-centered care to the aging population by becoming an accredited Geriatric Emergency Department (GEDA). Attendees learn about the process and benefits of GEDA.


Dr. Crystal Bowman, PhD, RN, MSN-Ed, CHSE, CNE, CNE-CL | Director of Nursing & Allied Health | Oregon Coast Community College


Rural Trans Health in Oregon

October 21, 2021

This conversation will help to foster an awareness of physical and behavioral health care access and barriers for trans people in rural Oregon.

Participants will:

  • Learn about the challenges that trans people (including binary and nonbinary individuals) face when accessing health care in rural Oregon.
  • Explore ways that trans people often navigate and respond to these barriers.
  • Gain an understanding of how to advocate with and care for trans communities.
  • Learn about trans educational resources, including Southern Oregon University’s Certificate in Transgender Studies and Trans and Queer Training program opportunities.


  • Carey Jean Sojka, PhD (they/them/theirs or she/her/hers) | Assistant Professor, Gender, Sexuality & Women’s Studies | Southern Oregon University
  • Kylan Mattias de Vries, PhD (he/him/his or they/them/theirs) | Associate Professor & Program Chair, Gender, Sexuality & Women’s Studies | Southern Oregon University


Disaster Preparedness for Older Adults and Their Caregivers

September 16, 2021

Older adults face unique challenges preparing for and in the aftermath of natural disasters. This population can be among the hardest hit by hurricanes, floods, winter storms, heat events, and extended power outages. Learn the many reasons older adults are at a particular disadvantage during disasters and how to help them and their families think through and prepare for a variety of scenarios.


Lauren Kraemer, MPH | Assistant Professor of Practice | Oregon State University Extension Service


Volunteers in Action

August 19, 2021

Learn about Volunteers in Action and consider how to use volunteer community caregiver programs to promote aging-in-place and combat social isolation. Learn program facets such as eligibility requirements, volunteer roles and best practices, opportunities to engage young people, and the effects the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the program.


  • Britta Wilson, MA | Volunteers in Action Program Coordinator, Providence Hood River


Race, Ethnicity, Language and Disability (REALD) Data Collection in Oregon

August 11, 2021

During this webinar the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) will provide REALD Program education to health care providers who are required to begin Race, Ethnicity, Language and Disability (REALD) data collection and reporting as of October 1, 2021. Learn about the OHA REALD Program, understand the reporting requirements and get your questions answered during this webinar.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand the history of REALD data collection in Oregon, including future data collection efforts for REALD and SOGI (sexual orientation and gender identity)
  • Understand why REALD data collection is important
  • Understand how to access resources for REALD data collection


  • Belle Shepherd, MPH, Lead for HB4212 REALD data collection for COVID-19 encounters, and government relations lead on REALD/SOGI legislation.
  • Marjorie McGee, PhD, OHA’s subject matter expert on all things REALD with Equity and Inclusion Division
  • Renee Harger, MPH, Lead for data collection on REALD for COVID-19 encounters in OHA’s Acute and Communicable Disease Program



Promoting Pediatric Lead Screening in Oregon

August 11, 2021

Health issues associated with pediatric lead exposure received attention recently when the water in Flint, Michigan, was found to contain lead.  Lead affects children in rural Oregon as well.  After this session, participants will have:

  • Knowledge about potential sources of lead in Oregon and how to mitigate exposure 
  • Knowledge about the unique childhood vulnerabilities that can result 
  • Understanding of the importance of pediatric blood level surveillance 
  • Information on how to prevent elevated blood levels in children 

NW PEHSU offers free consultations to clinicians regarding lead and other environmental exposures. Contact them at 1-877-KID-CHEM (1-877-543-2436) or email pehsu@uw.edu. Although it is housed in Washington, NW PEHSU also serves Oregon, Alaska, and Idaho.


Debra Cherry M.D., M.S. | Director of the Occupational and Environmental Residency Program | University of Washington

Dr. Cherry was joined by Ryan Barker of the OHA, Program Coordinator, Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, for the Q & A session.


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Covid Vaccinations

COVID Vaccinations

The latest COVID vaccination information for rural Oregon, updated as we receive new information.