It gives us great pleasure to congratulate the Community-Based Long-Term Care Network on being named the Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA’s) 2018 rural health champion of sustainability! The announcement was made Feb. 28 in Bethesda, MD, and the local program — comprised of 10 rural public hospital districts across Washington State — is one of seven national champions named by HRSA.
The network was developed to improve care of elderly residents in rural areas, where sustaining even basic long-term care services is becoming increasingly challenging with growing populations of elderly residents. The network received a grant from HRSA to establish itself and develop a plan for this work, and the award recognized the network’s success in demonstrating how its work can be continued after the duration of the grant period. It also recognizes the network’s plans to diversify and leverage grant funds to include other public and private funding sources in program delivery.
WSHA and AWPHD played a leading role in developing this network for our rural communities, as community-based care for elderly residents in these communities is greatly needed. We expect more than a quarter of residents in the network’s service area to be 65 or older by 2025, which will only increase the need. By working together, the network can make a greater collective impact in identifying challenges, building a structure to address those challenges and generating supporting funds.
We are delighted for the network to receive this recognition, and we are hopeful for the positive impact it can make on our rural communities for years to come.