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We are grateful for generous funding support from the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP).  Part of the Health Resources and Services Administration, FORHP coordinates activities related to rural health care within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 

Other Projects & Partners

Our investigators and staff also work on the following projects:

Flex Monitoring Team

The Flex Monitoring Team (FMT) is a consortium of the Rural Health Research Centers at the Universities of Minnesota, Southern Maine, and North Carolina. The FMT is funded by the Office of Rural Health Policy, Grant No. U27RH1080 to evaluate the impact of the Medicare Rural Hospital Flexibility Grant Program with respect to care quality, financial performance of CAHs, and community impact / benefit. For additional information, visit

Collaborative Research

Our staff collaborate on a number of projects led by the NORC Walsh Center for Rural Health Analysis, focused on evaluation, tracking, and cohort analysis. Current projects include the following:

Pilot Program Evaluation
This 36-month project is funded between 2015 and 2018 and evaluates a three-year funding opportunity awarded to ten recipients under 330a Outreach Authority. The Benefits Counseling Pilot Program is a community-based pilot program targeted to improve health literacy and health insurance enrollment in local and regional rural communities. It was designed to expand outreach, education and enrollment efforts to eligible individuals and families in rural communities. Using data reported by grantees themselves, as well as data collected through interviews, this study will focus on the grant process, impact, and program sustainability.

Rural Health Outreach Tracking and Evaluation
The goal of the Rural Health Outreach Tracking and Evaluation program is to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of federal grant programs under the Outreach Authority of Section 330A of the Public Health Service Act. NORC and the University of Minnesota are also working with the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH) and the National Rural Health Association (NRHA) to complete the evaluation. Activities are conducted within and across the six 330A Outreach Authority programs. Sample evaluation activities include the identification of common evaluation metrics across grant programs, evaluation of the network development planning grant program, and the use of evidence-based practices among grantees. Each evaluation project yields recommendations for improving the program and ensuring that rural health resources are used most effectively at the community level. Click here for additional information.

Cohort Analysis
This four-year study funded between 2016 and 2020 will analyze outputs and outcomes of four programs funded under the Community-Based Division of 330A Outreach Authority programs; i.e., Rural Health Care Services Outreach, Rural Health Network Development, Small Health Care Provider Quality Improvement Program, and the Delta State Rural Development Network Grant Program. The evaluation will look at process, outputs, and outcomes using primary data, secondary data, as well as input from experts at the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy, Technical Assistance Providers, and expert work groups.