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About AHCJ: General News

Rural health in the spotlight at workshop Date: 06/05/12

Rural Health Journalism Workshop 2012
Workshop home

Journalists from California to New York left Omaha, Neb., on June 1 with ideas about untold rural health stories.

AHCJ’s fifth Rural Health Journalism Workshop brought more than 50 people to hear speakers to discuss hunger and health, recruiting doctors and the growth of non-traditional health care professionals, the health status of children, the business of health, and health emergencies – all in a rural theme.

About 60 million people live in rural America – close to the same population of the entire country of Italy. Rural residents, health providers and government agencies face distinct health challenges for that population. Speakers addressed story ideas covering the technology that helps save lives, how the impact of federal and state health policies can differ between urban and rural, some advantages that rural residents enjoy, and more.

The workshop also marked the graduation of the first class in AHCJ’s Regional Health Journalism Fellowship Program. The fellows – from Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa – finished a year-long training program that began in July 2011. The program will continue for 2012-13 with fellows from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina and Tennessee.

Workshop sponsors were the Nebraska Press Association Foundation; the Office of Rural Health, Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services; and The Commonwealth Fund. Endowing sponsors were The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Reporters and editors gather in Omaha, Neb., for the 2012 Rural Health Journalism Workshop. (Photo: Jeff Porter / AHCJ)
Reporters and editors gather in Omaha, Neb., for the 2012 Rural Health Journalism Workshop.
(Photo: Jeff Porter / AHCJ)