The Campaign to Transform Rural Health

At the heart of the Transform Rural Health campaign is the belief that every person, regardless of where they live, deserves access to the resources and support necessary to achieve good health.

A long history of economic disinvestment, under-resourcing, and other systemic factors have led to poor health outcomes in many rural communities across New York State. People in rural areas face limited or unaffordable health care coverage, closure of health care facilities and a lack of physicians and other health care workers, inadequate transportation, limited food access, few career pathways, and housing shortages, among other barriers.

To help raise awareness of these issues and influence systemic change, the Health Foundation has launched this campaign to uplift the voices and stories of the people who live in, work in, and serve the rural communities of western and central New York.

Read the stories of rural health.

Download stories as a PDF here.

We believe:

People in rural communities deserve investments, resources, and support to achieve good health.

Rural health disparities are driven by the social determinants of health like health care coverage, transportation, food access, job opportunities, and housing. Economic health and community health are inseparable.

Rural health networks play a vital role in comprehensive care provision and community health. Rural health networks are collaboratives that address the challenges faced by rural areas.

Unfortunately, these networks – even as they achieve significant results for their community – have faced a significant reduction in state funding over the last several years. Since 2016, New York State funding for rural health networks has been slashed by almost 50 percent.

These cuts hinder the ability of rural health networks to improve the lives of the people they serve and meet community-wide health equity goals.

We are stronger together, and health inequity crosses geographic and cultural lines. Disparities in rural health often mirror the systemic barriers that lead to poor outcomes in urban areas. By addressing these issues head-on, we can create a ripple effect that improves health equity for all.

Join our campaign today by sharing the stories of real people in rural communities. Be a catalyst for change in rural health advocacy and awareness.

Contact your elected officials and tell them it’s time to Transform Rural Health.

How You Can HELP

Quick Facts About Rural Health in NYS