Securing health services administrators to manage health care organizations in rural areas and small town communities presents unique challenges; however, potential benefits abound for residents in terms of improving population health outcomes from a community-based approach and stimulating the local economy. The influx of community-based approaches to revitalize small towns and rural communities is evident in the literature. Small towns and rural areas lack advanced health care practices, which results in poor health outcomes; economic development as a result of a poorly prepared workforce; and community connection to the vast array of knowledge, activities, and other supports as a result of poor physical and virtual connectivity. An approach that prompts new health management graduates to practice where they have an opportunity to cultivate the residents, the community at large, and themselves is an optimal management method in improving rural areas. This framework places emphasis on students completing a health services administration curriculum training program and beginning their careers in underserved areas to positively impact rural communities by playing a role in revitalizing the local economy and improving population health.
Author Affiliation: Health Services Administration, Beacom School of Business, University of South Dakota, Vermillion.
Correspondence: Jewel Goodman Shepherd, PhD, MPA, CHES, Health Services Administration, Beacom School of Business, University of South Dakota, 414 East Clark St, Beacom Hall, Vermillion, SD 57069 (Jewel.Shepherd@usd.edu).
The author has no funding or conflicts of interest to disclose.
This article is not currently under review, nor has it been published elsewhere. No supporting data requiring human subjects' protocol were used. All ethical considerations have been adhered to and acknowledged. The manuscript has been seen and approved by all members and has not been (and will not be) submitted to any other journal while it is under consideration by this journal.