The UND Center for Rural Health (CRH) recently hosted a group of national and regional rural health leaders on a tour of innovative rural and tribal health systems around North Dakota. Brad Gibbens, deputy director of the CRH, and Lynette Dickson, associate director of CRH, facilitated the site visits. The rural health leaders came to North Dakota to learn about rural and tribal health innovation. The leaders are from federal and regional agencies. Some of the members are charged with implementing health policy and forging administrative functions (FORHP and CMS), while others represent agencies that educate, inform, and advocate for rural health (NRHA and CHAD). Each may have a different focus and function, but they all came to listen, learn, and absorb some positive examples of rural and tribal healthcare. The group met with healthcare professionals in Beulah, Hazen, New Town, and Watford City.
Members of the group included: Tom Morris, associate administrator for Rural Health Policy at the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP); Sahi Rafiullah, chief advisor, FORHP; Cara James, PhD, director of the Office of Minority Health at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS); Diane Moll, deputy regional administrator, Denver Regional CMS Office; Alan Morgan, CEO, National Rural Health Association (NRHA); Brock Slabach, vice president for member services, NRHA; and Shelly Ten-Naple, CEO, Community Healthcare Association of the Dakotas (CHAD).