Well, as the sun sets on my year as the NOSORH President, I take a moment to reflect on the year and consider what a year it has been. It has been interesting, if nothing else, but despite the environment that surrounded us, there were some significant steps forward made by NOSORH this year.
Since it is so fresh in my mind, National Rural Health Day has continued to expand with more activity from the offices, our partners, and our communities. Who would have thought that this would have expanded so quickly in six years? Congratulations and thanks go out to the Communications Committee for all their hard work on ensuring the success of NRHD and to all the State Offices for promoting it in their states.
While on the one hand it was a difficult year to get any new policies past Congress, on the other hand this may have been the busiest year for NOSORH in terms of commenting on rules and policies. While the SORH reauthorization did not happen, it has been moved forward significantly and I believe it is in good shape for the incoming Congress to pass. The hard work of the Policy Committee and the legislative liaison have put us in a great position to get this passed. I would also like to recognize the hard work of the Policy and Program Monitoring Team (PPMT) on keeping up with the changes occurring in health care, providing topics for education and helping to wade through the proposed rules and composing comments for CMS.
All the committees have been active this year and I wish I had the time to note the work each of them have been involved with, but I do want to thank everyone for the hard work they have done on behalf of NOSORH to help make this a more prominent organization in rural health policy circles. I also want to especially thank the staff for their support and work over the past year. While I think the membership has a lot of good ideas, it is the hard work of the staff that translates those ideas into action.
Finally, I had a great time serving as your President. I will continue to serve in my role as the Past-President, especially to support Sharla Allen, the Wyoming SORH Director, as the incoming President. Sharla has been an active board member and will provide excellent leadership as NOSORH continues to expand its activities and influence. Please welcome her in her new role. I also want to thank Mary Sheridan for her leadership and support for the past three years in the various president’s roles. Mary will continue to serve on the board and provide her experience and thoughtfulness in her role there.
Mahalo and Hau‘ouli Lanui, Mele Kalikimaka, & Hau‘oli Makahiki Hou,
R. Scott Daniels