National Rural Health Day 2019 Shines a Light on the People and Organizations Making a Positive Difference in Rural America

National Rural Health Day

Every year in the United States, the third Thursday of November is recognized as National Rural Health Day. On Nov. 21, 2019, the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH), the 50 State Offices of Rural Health, federal, state and local agencies, and health care organizations across the country will honor the thousands of men and women, first responders, over 1,200 Critical Access Hospitals, the estimated 4,500 Rural Health Clinics, and thousands more rural health organizations serving the unique health needs of an estimated 57 million rural lives.

While much of the focus on rural health issues today relates to unmet needs and challenges, such as the ongoing opioid crisis and rural hospital closures, National Rural Health Day, a grassroots movement now in its ninth year, celebrates the “Power of Rural.” A central focus of the day is to shine a light on those whose contributions are making a positive difference.

As a part of the day-long nationwide celebration, NOSORH will publish its annual collection of “Community Stars” on Nov. 21. The electronic book, also available in print for the first time, contains the heartfelt and inspiring stories of dynamic, accomplished, and selfless rural health professionals, volunteers, and organizations from 44 states. Each featured Community Star was nominated to honor their tireless efforts and outstanding rural community service in the name of improving rural health access, quality and outcomes.

One of the many extraordinary rural health heroes featured as a 2019 Community Star includes Tim Baty, Osteopathic Medical Student, Jonesboro, Arkansas, a native Arkansan from the small town of Widener (population 300), whose mission is to help prevent others from experiencing the loss of a loved one due to an inability to pay, lack of knowledge, or access to preventative screening. 

Others featured include Jo Ann N. Brown, Program Director and Coordinator of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, Wingdale, New York. Brown helps lead the “Ending the Silence” program in the local schools and teaches “Family-to-Family,” a 12-week, evidence-based course that provides communication and problem-solving skills, mutual support, and compassionate reinforcement for taking care of loved ones with mental health issues. Another tells the story of the Rescue Divas from Ashland, Wisconsin, a hands-on summer camp program for middle school girls, encouraging them to explore careers in health care and emergency medical services in the hopes of addressing the area’s first responder shortage.

In addition to reading the collection of Community Star stories, NOSORH is featuring a two-week screening of the award-winning documentary The Providers and hosting a special NRHD live event featuring Anna Moot-Levin, one of the producers, and Matthew Probst, PA-C, presented in the film. 

For further detail about other NRHD events next week, free tools, and more, visit, contact Ashley Muninger,, or Michelle Rathman,

Source: National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health


Categories: Healthcare

Tags: Health Policy, Healthcare, National Rural Health Day, Rural Health

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