Population Health/ Health Equity
Defining Rural Population Health and Health Equity
As the terms “population health” and “health equity” become integrated into the rural health vocabulary, it is important to establish a unified understanding of what these terms mean. This issue brief aims to define population health and health equity, with particular attention to the nuances for rural clinical partners. It can be used to educate rural health and clinical care partners on their approaches to population health and health equity and engage rural health stakeholders in meaningful discussions that improve the health and well-being of rural residents.
Identifying Vulnerable Rural Populations During COVID-19: The CDC’s Social Vulnerability Index
Social vulnerability refers to a community’s capacity to prepare for and respond to the stress of hazardous events — including natural disasters and pandemics. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has created a multifactor Social Vulnerability Index (SVI) which can be used to identify vulnerable rural populations at greatest risk of impact by hazardous events. The SVI is calculated at two levels — one set of variables for all US counties and a second set for all US census tracts — and updated bi-annually.
Resources for Rural Community Health Needs Assessments and Community Health Improvement Plans
The National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH), with support from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP), developed this fact sheet for rural health stakeholders interested in systematically improving population health and health equity in rural communities through a community health improvement process.
Best Practice Guide for Engagement with SORH and CDC-funded State Programs
The Best Practice Guide for Engagement with State Offices of Rural Health (SORH) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-funded State Programs is designed to assist SORH and state CDC-funded initiatives to identify opportunities to collaborate across programs at the state level.
This guide includes three short success stories of SORH engagement with CDC partners in their state and documents how to integrate these programs. Success stories and resources were identified during a SORH listening session on social determinants of health and follow up interviews and a joint SORH, Federal Office of Rural Health Policy, and CDC meeting held during the 2019 National Rural Health Association annual meeting.
Social Determinants of Health – A Quick Reference Guide for SORH and STHO
This quick reference guide includes partners, resources, and initiatives that take a look at social determinants of health. There are many factors that influence the health of people living and working in rural America: access to care, genetics, relationships with friends and family, environment, and a wide variety of social determinants of health. While the focus of many rural health programs is on the delivery of healthcare services, research has shown that 20 percent of an individual’s health is attributed to healthcare, 30 percent to health behaviors, and the remaining 50 percent related to socioeconomic or environmental factors.