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Rural Health Journalism Workshop 2014: Program

7:30-8:15 a.m.

The breakfast bar and luncheon session are included in your membership. 


8:40-8:50 a.m.



8:50-9:50 a.m.

Rural health landscape: Meeting the people, meeting the challenges

What do you need to know about rural residents? This session lays out the landscape for reporters covering rural health stories. You’ll learn about the current status of rural populations at the national and regional scale and how new training and innovations are helping to meet the health needs of this population. 
  • John Green, Ph.D., director, Center for Population Studies, The University of Mississippi

  • Mark O’Hollaren, M.D., vice president of strategic outreach, Oregon Science & Health University

  • Moderator: Joe Rojas-Burke, AHCJ topic leader/social determinants; independent journalist, Portland, Ore.


10-11 a.m.

Telemedicine: Technology triumphs and regulation challenges

The technology that allows specialists to examine patients hundreds of miles away are demonstrating that telemedicine can save lives and curtail disability. But while outcomes are improving, are regulations covering reimbursement and delivery falling behind the technology? As telemedicine becomes more widespread, find new story angles for your audience. 
  • Miles Ellenby, M.D., medical director, Telemedicine Network, Oregon Health & Science University

  • Mario Gutierrez, executive director, Center for Connected Health Policy, The National Telehealth Resource Center

  • Saerom Yoo, social services reporter, (Salem, Ore.) Statesman Journal


11:10 a.m.-12:10 p.m.

The aging of rural physicians and the next generation of care

Most of rural America is experiencing a significant physician shortage, likely to get much worse due to the graying workforce. The solution is multifaceted – and includes telemedicine, more physician assistants and nurse practitioners – but physicians will remain a critical part for any future rural health care system. Expert speakers will look at the new stories of partnerships encouraging physicians to serve in rural settings and how other providers might play a part. 
  • Andrew Bazemore, M.D., M.P.H., director, Robert Graham Center for Policy Studies in Family Medicine and Primary Care, American Academy of Family Physicians

  • Mark A. Richardson, M.D., MScB, M.B.A., dean, School of Medicine, Oregon Health & Science University

  • Moderator: Jason Hidalgo, business reporter, Reno (Nev.) Gazette-Journal


12:15-2 p.m.

Luncheon session

Upstream of the rapids: Rural health leadership in a changing countryside

Seeing rural health problems downstream – with people thrashing for help in a metaphorical river’s rapids – is one perspective. But our luncheon speaker, with almost 30 years of experience in Oregon public health, primary care, public policy and philanthropy, will tell her own stories of rural health looking upstream, where the problems can begin. You’ll hear about changes in rural health leadership, providers and finances across Oregon and across the United States, and how those changes might affect rural residents.
  • Tina Castañares, M.D., consultant on health care for special populations


2:10-3:10 p.m.

How the ACA impacts rural health care

Rural residents can see higher insurance premiums, fewer choices for providers and more distances to travel. How are states, regions, providers and others managing to cover these gaps? As the Affordable Care Act takes effect, what will rural residents need to know? This panel will explore these questions and more.
  • Timothy D. McBride, Ph.D., professor, Brown School, Washington University

  • K. John McConnell, Ph.D., director, Center for Health Systems Effectiveness, Oregon Health & Science University

  • Moderator: Stephanie O'Neill, health care correspondent, Southern California Public Radio


3:20-4:20 p.m.

Poor oral health: What’s the cost?

Oral health has obstacles in many parts of the United States: Access to practitioners and the issue of cost are not new concerns. But in a rural setting, those obstacles become steeper. Many rural areas are underserved and overlooked for oral care. This panel of experts spells out the challenges, the cost of poor oral health and how new efforts might manage them.
  • David Jordan, project director, Dental Access Project, Community Catalyst

  • Phillip T. Marucha, D.M.D., Ph.D., dean, School of Dentistry, Oregon Health & Science University

  • Moderator: Cynthia Craft, senior health writer, The Sacramento Bee