Running a rural hospital requires a lot of time, commitment, and knowledge. It is essential that rural health leaders have a platform to learn and share their success stories. This week we welcome back Brock Slabach, Chief Operating Officer of the National Rural Health Association, to discuss how the NRHA is supporting rural hospitals and those who lead them. Brock discusses a variety of programs that support rural hospital executives, boards, and legislators.
We also talk about an upcoming event to connect with rural health leaders- the Critical Access Hospital Conference in Kansas City, MO. Register with the link below for early bird pricing by September 7th! Link for CAH conference registration
“We don't do nearly enough of recognizing the great work that hospitals are doing in rural areas. And this conference is a way for us to show a showcase some of that stunning work that's going on out in, in rural parts of our country.”
Brock joined NRHA in 2008. He is NRHA's Chief Operating Officer. He was a rural hospital administrator for more than 21 years and has served on the board of the National Rural Health Association and the regional policy board of the American Hospital Association. Brock specializes in rural health system development that encompasses population health and the varied payment programs moving rural providers into value-based purchasing models.
Brock is a member of the National Quality Forum’s Measures Application Partnership (MAP) Rural Health Workgroup and serves on the Board of Directors of Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC). Brock is the 2015 recipient of the Calico Quality Leadership Award of the National Rural Health Resource Center, received the American Society of Healthcare Pharmacists (ASHP) Board of Directors’ Award of Honor for 2018, and the NRHA’s President’s Award in 2023. Brock earned a master of public health degree in health administration from the University of Oklahoma and is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives.
The prevalence of mental illness is on the rise across the U.S., but the mental healthcare needs of rural residents often are not met. Our next guest on Rural Health Leadership Radio, Dr. Carrie Cadwell, discusses how community mental health centers and crisis stabilization units can provide better mental health access to rural residents. Dr. Cadwell is a psychologist and President/CEO of 4C Health, in our conversation she shares why she was drawn to behavioral health from her experiences growing up. We also discuss how 4C Health is combatting fatigue in a healthcare workforce we know is facing burnout at levels we have never seen before.
“Community mental health centers in every state are set up really to be that safety net for mental health and behavioral health.”
-Dr. Carrie Cadwell
Dr. Carrie Cadwell has been the CEO/President of 4C Health since 2017. She is a licensed psychologist in the state of Indiana. Dr. Cadwell has dedicated her almost 20-year career to rural North Central Indiana communities and in particular serving the behavioral health and substance use recovery needs of those with significant socio-economic disadvantage.
Community Health Workers are crucial to improving public health, especially in rural areas where health services are limited. Rural Community Health Workers improve health outcomes by acting as a connector between health services and patients. This week we learn more about the important role of CHWs in rural areas from Claire Hughes, a doctoral student and Outreach Coordinator at Community Health & Emergency Services (CHESI) in Cairo, IL. In our conversation with Claire, we delve into how research supports the role of CHWs and discuss current obstacles encountered by this workforce. We also explore how CHWs can impact the future of rural health equity.
“CHWs are a flexible workforce, and they can reach populations that licensed professionals, researchers and policymakers just will not be able to.”
Claire Hughes is the Outreach Coordinator at Community Health & Emergency Services (CHESI) in Cairo, IL. She has been working in outreach and family advocacy in Southern Illinois for almost 10 years and is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in Population Health at SIU Carbondale. Claire is an active advocate for the inclusion of peer-support interventions in rural healthcare. Her doctoral research focuses on the development of the community health worker workforce in rural healthcare systems.
This week, we are celebrating the 7th anniversary of Rural Health Leadership Radio! Listen in to hear from Bill and Sydney discuss the wonderful journey of how this podcast started, and how it has created a community for rural health leaders worldwide. Bill and Sydney also countdown our top 10 most listened episodes. We are lucky to have built a community with our guests and listeners of Rural Health Leadership Radio over the last 7 years. Thank you for joining our journey to improve the world by engaging rural health leaders in conversations, learning, and research!
“We’re trying to make people feel connected, not isolated, by sharing best practices, success stories, what’s working, what’s not working in rural health. “
-Dr. Bill Auxier
Dr. Bill Auxier founded Rural Health Leadership Radio 7 years ago with the mission of impacting rural healthcare at a very fundamental level. Rural Health Leadership Radio provides a forum for conversations, learning, and research, to assist rural health leaders in becoming more effective leaders. We provide a space for rural health leaders to discuss and share what ideas are working, what are not, lessons learned, success stories, strategies, things to avoid, and anything else relating to rural health leadership.
The perspectives of young leaders in rural health are incredibly valuable, and this week we are joined by our very own, Jaquesha Jefferson. Jaquesha is an intern with the Center for Rural Health Leadership and a Master of Public Health student at Florida State University. In our conversation, Jaquesha shares her perspective on rural health from growing up in a small Florida town, and what she has learned from her experiences working in rural health. She highlights the importance of understanding different cultural backgrounds as they relate to healthcare, and we discuss the incredible bonds created among rural health leaders.
“Individuals in rural communities really stick together and want to help, It's not a mindset of I want to be the best, but how can we all be the best. “
Jaquesha Jefferson is a 21-year-old native of Tallahassee, FL. Miss Jefferson graduated with her Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences on a Pre-Clinical Track from UCF in August 2022. She is currently pursuing her Master of Public Health degree at Florida State University with a concentration in health policy and is interested in understanding what changes can be implemented at the governmental level to eliminate health disparities faced by individuals residing in rural communities. Jaquesha previously worked for the Florida Department of Health as the FLEX Grant Coordinator, where she was able to implement a Rural Emergency Hospital education curriculum and oversee other various projects to support the health and success of rural counties in the State. Currently, she works remotely as a Data Analyst for CommHIT, a501 (c)(6) located at the Kennedy Space Center. Miss Jefferson has a true passion for serving others, and expanding access to care for all individuals, ensuring that the quality of life is great for all by the elimination of health disparities.