Mississippi Office of Rural Health and Primary Care

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The Mississippi Office of Rural Health and Primary Care (MORHPC) works to help rural communities build productive health care delivery systems.

The Rural Health Office administers federal grants and collects data on rural health needs, performs policy analysis and development, and coordinates support for rural health facilities and health interests statewide.

The Primary Care Office works to make primary care services available to residents of the state, especially in underserved areas, by facilitating the recruitment and retention of health care providers.

Rural Health

Rule 1.3.1 of the Mississippi State Rural Health Plan defines a rural area as:

  1. a Mississippi county that has a population less than 50,000 individuals; or
  2. an area that has fewer than 500 individuals per square mile; or
  3. a municipality of fewer than 15,000 individuals.

There are several definitions that the federal government uses to define "rural". The U. S. Census Bureau, the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and the federal Office of Rural Health Policy have varying definitions for rural. Read these definitions

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Primary Care

Mississippi is historically a medically underserved state with poor outcomes for core health indicators. Access to quality preventive and primary care services is central to improving the health status of Mississippians. The Primary Care Office works to ensure the availability of primary care services for residents of the state, collaborating with various state and federal organizations, and helps facilitate the recruitment and retention of health care providers.

Programs and Activities

The Primary Care Office is responsible for:

  • Conducting a statewide Primary Care Needs Assessment
  • Management of the state's shortage area designations
  • An annual assessment of primary care, dental and mental health providers
  • Coordination of the site application process for the National Health Service Program for the state
  • Administration of the Conrad State 30 J-1 Visa Waiver Program and National Interest Waiver Program
  • Administration of the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) J-1 VISA Waiver Program
  • Assisting facilities with recruitment and retention efforts for primary care health professionals
  • The provision of technical assistance to entities interested in expanding access to primary care services

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MSDH Office of Rural Health and Primary Care

Post Office Box 1700
570 East Woodrow Wilson
Osborne 150
Jackson, MS 39215-1700

Telephone: (601) 576-7874
Fax: (601) 576-7873

Last reviewed on Jun 21, 2023 request edits

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Mississippi State Department of Health 570 East Woodrow Wilson Dr Jackson, MS 39216 866‑HLTHY4U Contact and information

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