Rural Issues

Challenges unique to rural areas include insufficiently funded and trained health care providers, long-distance travel costs, greater stigma due to decreased privacy, and higher rates of SUD incidence, morbidity, overdose occurrence, and mortality. The articles below can help you better appreciate the unique challenges rural communities must contend with.

To read the articles, click on the blue buttons below.


What it’s like to be the only doctor in a rural area.

This PBS “Brief But Spectacular” segment highlights Dr. Karen Kinsell, the only physician in Fort Gaines, Georgia, where 40 percent of residents live below the poverty line.

Their Only Doctor

Kentucky leads nation in percentage of fentanyl-positive drug tests; also high in cocaine, meth and heroin.

Over one million tests contribute to new report by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.


New “Action Guide” tool helps rural community leaders build an effective local response to drug addiction.

Read the entire Rural Community Action Guide here at by clicking the button below.

Action Guide