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MSN-FP6616 - Summary Report on Rural Health Care and Affordable Solutions

Type: Assessment

Subject: Summary Report

Subject area: Nursing

Education Level: Masters

Length: 5 pages

Referencing style: APA

Preferred English: US English

Spacing Option: Double

Instructions: Prepare a 4–5-page summary report of a rural health care problem and potential solutions. Note: Complete the assessments in this course in the order in which they are presented. 

Turning barriers into bridges is a skill you will want to develop as a care coordination expert. Today, care coordination is required often in rural areas where there are limited resources and the need to work creatively with interprofessional team members who may reside outside of the local area. The use of telehealth becomes a bridge to care coordination as a collaborative tool for health care providers as a team of specialist. 

Also Read: Nursing PICO Questions Help For your Assessment

Summary Report on Rural Health Care and Affordable Solutions

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Summary Report on Rural Health Care and Affordable Solutions

Rural healthcare plays a significant role in their communities. Apart from enhancing the rural population’s health and well-being, rural hospitals provide employment opportunities to community residents and attract other business ventures that boost living standards (Rogan & Lewis, 2020). Despite these benefits, rural healthcare facilities struggle financially, and a significant number of them have shut down. America has closed 121 hospitals since 2010 forcing rural residents to travel to urban areas to access healthcare services, which undermines rural patients’ access to necessary services (Rogan & Lewis, 2020). Identifying long-term solutions to rural healthcare is necessary to enhance rural facilities’ operational and financial flexibility.

Rural Population and Needs

A rural community is a community that is less densely populated compared to the urban population. The community is characterized by high unemployment rates, poverty, underinsured and uninsured populations, and underemployed than urban areas. Rural communities face multiple patients’ issues. They include healthcare workers shortage, limited rural health training opportunities, and delaying care. According to Nielsen, D’Agostino, & Gregory (2017), approximately 20% of Americans reside in rural areas. However, less than a tenth of physicians practice in these areas. By 2025, rural areas will experience a shortage of about 20,000 primary care physicians per federal government estimates (Nielsen, D’Agostino, & Gregory, 2017). The problem is worsened by limited health training opportunities in rural areas. Most residencies and medical schools in the United States are in suburban and urban areas, leading to fewer physicians willing to practice in rural settings. 

Additionally, students in remote areas have limited opportunities to obtain prerequisite science and math courses required by medical schools (Nielsen, D’Agostino, & Gregory, 2017).  Rural residents are forced to travel long distances to access care. Most rural residents are a self-employed farming community. The need to care for their crops and livestock are given priority over traveling long distances to access care. Thus, rural population delays seeking care, leading to sicker patients with complex illness. The One population I can assist with this plan is Hispanic group residing in the rural community.

Care Coordinators should have a thorough comprehension of the community they serve.  The trust they develop with the community allows them to act as intermediary and liaisons between the community and social/health services. However, the care coordinator should be aware of the diversity of the rural population. For instance, some of them are low-wage laborers; some are framers, while others are self-employed. Therefore, the healthcare coordinator should address the challenges that these individuals face while seeking healthcare services.

Current Available Interprofessional Team Providers and Resources

Inter-professional team providers involve healthcare workers from distinct disciplines collaborating to provide patients with complementary and integrated services. According to Morley and Cashell (2017), inter-professional teams results in improved health outcomes, innovative and patient-focused care, and clinically excellent services. In the rural community, social workers, physicians, pharmacists, nurses, and other healthcare workers collaborate to improve patient outcomes. However, rural healthcare features like staff shortages, distance, and service centralization threaten effective inter-professional practice. Despite these challenges, inter-professional team providers can collaborate with telehealth partners and other stakeholders in the region to provide quality and safe care to the rural population. Telehealth uses audio technology and video to connect specialists and care providers in large and small hospitals, respectively (Harrison, 2019). The use of this technology reduces the burdens and challenges encountered by rural patients while seeking specialty care, such as transportation issues. Therefore, telehealth will promote inter-professional teamwork between rural and urban hospitals to enhance service delivery.

Areas of Cultural Competency the Team must address

Hispanic/Latino population is culturally diverse because of their distinct origins. For instance, some of this population came from the Caribbean while others came from South and Central America and Mexico (Kaplan & Zavaleta, 2017). Individuals from these regions have dialectic and linguistic variations and differences in customs, lifestyles, and beliefs. The inter-professional team providers should consider these variations when providing care to this patient population. Similarly, the interprofessional team should understand that a difference exists between cultural and social factors between Latinos residing in urban and rural environments (Kaplan & Zavaleta, 2017). Taking into consideration Hispanic’s cultural realities and origins should be considered when designing healthcare services. Otherwise, cultural barriers such as cultural and language limitations might undermine collaboration and coordination between family, patients, and diverse teams. According to Morley and Cashell (2017), coordination and cooperation are crucial to offering exceptional care. However, failure to address patients’ linguistic and cultural barriers can affect care delivery.

Technology-Based Outreach Strategies

ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) are vital in facilitating health education and inter-professional collaboration in remote and rural settings. ICT entails broadcasting and telecommunication systems, computer network and services, software and hardware, including managing multimedia and producing content (Dogba et al., 2019). ICT also involves mobile phone applications and internet technologies. These communication technologies can provide continuous professional development for healthcare workers in remote areas and rural areas (Dogba et al., 2019). However, a lack of ICT in rural areas remains a challenge for physicians practicing in these settings. Therefore, stakeholders in the healthcare sector can integrate telephone and electronic healthcare records to involve rural communities in addressing and defining their healthcare needs and disease prevention. Although the use of the internet can be impersonal and expensive, non-existence, or limited, it can be adopted to augment programs in the rural healthcare setting. ICT use should not replace in-person community consultation but should be integrated to promote rural community’s health and well-being through outreach programs. Additionally, health care workers should modify ICTs to reflect the linguistic needs and literacy level of the target population.

Possible Legal Issues with Telehealth and How the Technology Provides Clear Path to Ethical Practice in Future

Telehealth is the delivery of healthcare remotely through technology. Telehealth is useful in promoting wellness and disease awareness, educating providers and patients because of its innovative technologies like mobile phone applications, website monitoring applications, videoconferencing, and wearable technology (Marcoux & Vogenberg, 2016). Despite these benefits, there are legal issues associated with it. For instance, telehealth licensing differs across states, thus limiting its widespread application. There lacks standardized regulatory and legal frameworks to guide the adoption of telehealth. 

Similarly, the absence of standardized laws creates reimbursement dilemmas due to a lack of consistency in regulations that supports telehealth use in care delivery (Marcoux & Vogenberg, 2016). Patient privacy is a legal issue that needs to be addressed when using telehealth. Therefore, healthcare providers should comply with state and federal security and privacy laws when using telehealth to avoid data breaches. Additionally, hospital administrators should educate their staff about security laws like the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act to enhance individual compliance with these laws when accessing Protected Health Information.

 Telehealth provides a clear path to ethical practice in future.  The healthcare sector’s technology adoption provides significant insights into the new legal challenges that will emerge with information and communication technology use in the healthcare sector. Therefore, healthcare organizations should create technology ethics committees to address ethical challenges associated with technology adoption in the healthcare setting


  Rural healthcare faces operational and financial challenges that undermine individuals’ access to care. For instance, the facilities face workers shortage and patients have to travel long distances to access care. As a result, they delay seeking care, leading to the overuse of the emergency department. Rural facilities can use information and communication technologies, like telehealth to facilitate inter-professional collaboration, disease prevention, and community education. However, stakeholders should address the legal issues associated with technology use in care delivery.


Dogba, M. J., Dossa, A. R., Breton, E., & Gandonou-Migan, R. (2019). Using information and communication technologies to involve patients and the public in health education in rural and remote areas: a scoping review. BMC health services research, 19(1), 1-7.

Marcoux, R. M., & Vogenberg, F. R. (2016). Telehealth: applications from a legal and regulatory perspective. Pharmacy and therapeutics, 41(9), 567-570

Morley, L., & Cashell, A.(2017). Collaboration in health care. Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, 48, 207-216

Nielsen, M., D’Agostino, D., & Gregory, P.(2017). Addressing rural health challenges head on. The Journal of Missouri State Medical Association, 114(5), 363-366.

Kaplan, M.A., & Zavaleta, A.(2017, March 23). Cultural competency: The key to Latino health policy. Journal of Hispanic Policy, https://hjhp.hkspublications.org/2017/03/23/cultural-competency-the-key-to-latino-health-policy-a-commentary/

Harrison, M.(2019). Telehealth is improving health care in rural areas. Boston MA: Harvard Business Review

Rogan, E., & Lewis, J.(2020, January 28). Rural healthcare: Big challenges require big solutions. America Hospital Association, https://www.aha.org/news/insights-and-analysis/2020-01-28-rural-health-care-big-challenges-require-big-solutions