USDA Rural Development: Supporting healthy people through healthy places

Erin Oban

Every third Thursday of November – this year, Nov. 17 – Americans recognize National Rural Health Day as an opportunity to celebrate the “power of rural.” The delivery of rural health care does far more than prevent us from getting sick and tend to us when we’re ill. Rural health care employs our neighbors. It influences whether new families move to our towns or if our aging populations can stay. A rural health care system strengthens the small businesses around it, donates to local organizations and supports kids’ school fundraisers, and keeps our communities thriving.

Here at USDA Rural Development, we believe that people who live, work, raise a family, and grow old in our rural towns and tribal communities deserve access to quality, patient-centered health care right in or as close to their hometowns as possible. The dedicated professionals who provide their care, who clean up, cook in, and care for these facilities also deserve to work in safe, modern sites with the space and equipment they need to provide this essential service. By partnering alongside health systems, foundations, and local leaders and champions, USDA Rural Development is helping to finance the rural hospitals, clinics, dental, recovery, and care facilities upon which thousands of rural North Dakotans depend.

Erin Oban is the USDA RD State Director for North Dakota.