Rural Health

What's happening in Rural Health

COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Ending May 11, 2023--Important Implications for RHCs. The Biden Administration recently announced their intent to end the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) on May 11, 2023. At the onset of the PHE, many waivers and flexibilities were granted (PDF) across the health care industry to reduce administrative burden, increase access to care, and more. Since then, many of the flexibilities have been granted permanent coverage, or given a timeline separate from the PHE. This will significantly impact CMS Certified Rural Health Clinics (RHCs) and Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), as well as other provider types.

The National Association of Rural Health Clinics (NARHC) is the nation’s #1 resource for all things RHC. We recommend reviewing their article, “The Approaching End of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency and Its Implications for RHCs” as well as keeping an eye on the Resources tab for any upcoming TA webinars.

NHSC New Site Application Cycle is Open: The National Health Service Corps (NHSC) New Site Application Cycle is open through June 22, 2023. Interested sites can start by reviewing the NHSC Site Reference Guide (PDF). Site applicants can also contact the Washington State Primary Care Office for assistance with the application process.

The new 2023 J-1 Visa Waiver Program application cycle opens October 1, 2022, and closes September 30, 2023. See the Workforce and Recruitment webpage for more information about the program and current slot availability.

The 2023 Northwest Rural Health Conference was a great success! We had 488 attendees! This year’s success would not have been possible without the organizations that dedicated their time to planning this event. We would like to recognize and thank the Oregon State Office of Rural Health, the WWAMI AHEC Programs, Washington Rural Health Association, and Fred Hutch. Save the Date: 2024 NW Rural Health Conference will be on March 25-27, 2024.

What we do

The Washington State Office of Rural Health and Primary Care Office support health systems planning and development in Washington's rural and underserved communities to improve health and healthcare across the life span.

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