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Fifth Annual Eccles Family Rural West Conference

A Healthier Rural West: Critical Issues…Innovative Solutions

Santa Fe, New Mexico, March 23-25, 2017

Panel 5: Health Equity and Social Disparity

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Many factors contribute to an individual’s state of health. The Centers for Disease Control highlights five key determinants, including one’s biology and genetics, individual behavior, available health services, physical environment, and social environment. This panel explored the links between social disparities and health outcomes in the rural American West. Speakers focused on identifying the needs of the most vulnerable populations in the rural Southwest, including Native American tribes and Latino communities, increasing human capacity to address those needs, and how to improve the communication gap between doctors and patients.

Held March 24, 2017 at the School for Advanced Research, Santa Fe, NM


Speakers Click name to cue video

Panel Recap

Michele Barry, senior associate dean of global health at Stanford, offered innovative solutions to address the lack of primary health physicians in the rural west. She suggested loan forgiveness to new doctors who begin their careers in rural areas, shifting tasks from doctors to qualified nurse practitioners, employing successful strategies from international partners and fostering a renewed sense of community in rural populations.

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Panel 3: Housing


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Rural West Conference Volume

Bridging the Distance

Common Issues of the Rural West

Edited by David B. Danbom
Foreword by David M. Kennedy

Published in cooperation with the Bill Lane Center for the American West, Stanford University
The University of Utah Press has published Bridging the Distance, a book by the Rural West Initiative of the Bill Lane Center for the American West. Edited by the distinguished historian David B. Danbom and with a foreword by Center co-founding director David M. Kennedy, the book explores the Rural West across four dimensions: Community, Land, Economics – and defining the Rural West itself. The book is the result of work presented at the first Conference on the Rural West, which took place in Ogden, Utah, in October 2012.