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Rural Health Leadership Radio™

Over the last ten years, over 100 rural hospitals have closed their doors. Roughly one in three rural hospitals have been identified as “at risk.” If there was ever a need for strong leadership, that time is now. RHLR’s mission is to provide a forum to have conversations with rural health leaders to discuss and share ideas about what is working, what is not working, lessons learned, success stories, strategies, things to avoid and anything else you want to talk and hear about. RHLR provides a voice for rural health. The only investment is your time, and our goal is to make sure you receive a huge return on your investment. For more information, visit www.rhlradio.com or e-mail bill@billauxier.com.
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Jun 4, 2019

We’re talking about how we can provide support for caregivers with Dr. Carrie Henning Smith, Assistant Professor and Deputy Director of the Rural Health Research Center at the University of Minnesota, School of Public Health.

“…caregiving in a rural context is different than in an urban context.”

~Dr. Carrie Henning Smith

Dr. Smith grew up in a small town in Wisconsin, with deep roots across the Midwest, in Illinois, Iowa, and Nebraska. Farming has been in her family for years, making rural health near to her heart. She embraces the broad lens that public health has on issues, including healthcare, climate change, poverty, as well as demography and context. Dr. Smith has studied long-term care in Rural America, focusing on unpaid caregivers. Unpaid caregivers make up the bulk of the long-term care system, and Dr. Smith noticed that there was little research being done on what it is truly like to be an unpaid caregiver in a rural setting.

“I think the more we can elevate the conversation from a personal or family crisis to a larger conversation that we are all a part of, I think the better off we will all be.”

~Dr. Carrie Henning Smith

Dr. Smith delved into the differences between the rural and urban caregiving experience, as well as the unique rural challenges and opportunities for supporting caregivers. She finds that rural caregiving programs, policies, and other programs need to be designed with rural communities in mind, given the differences in rural and urban caregiving. With more constraints than urban areas, rural healthcare faces issues that require more teamwork and more open conversations in order to be conquered.

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