Rural Populations

This installment of the SAMHSA Disaster Behavioral Health Information Series (DBHIS) focuses on disaster behavioral health for rural communities. Topics covered include but are not limited to the following:

  • Disaster preparedness, response, and recovery for people in rural communities
  • Information for disaster response organizations in rural areas
  • Economic concerns after disasters
  • Use of technology to provide behavioral health services for people in rural areas
  • Disaster behavioral health for farming communities

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Related Resources

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AgriWellness, Inc. - AgriWellness, Inc.
This website addresses the behavioral health care needs of rural agricultural communities. It provides information about behavioral health programs, rural helplines, available resources and trainings, and Healthy Farmer newsletters.

Center for Rural Health - Center for Rural Health, University of North Dakota
Established in 1980 and housed at the University of North Dakota, the Center for Rural Health provides information on rural health policy, research, education, and community development.

Coping in hard times: Fact sheet for parents - National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN)
This fact sheet from the NCTSN discusses challenging financial circumstances and economic hardships that can negatively affect youth and families. It offers practical ways to address the challenges during economic hardships by improving a sense of safety, calming, self- and community efficacy, connectedness, and hope.

Developing cultural competence in disaster mental health programs: Guiding principles and recommendations - Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
This guide is intended to assist residents in rural areas with planning, designing, and implementing culturally competent behavioral health services following a disaster.

Disaster mental health: Crisis counseling programs for the rural community - Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
This SAMHSA publication addresses the unique qualities of rural communities in the context of a crisis counseling program. Guidelines are provided for developing an effective crisis counseling program for rural areas.

Disaster recovery in rural communities: A case study of Southwest Louisiana - Southern Rural Sociology
This paper provides a descriptive case study to develop a better understanding of the disaster recovery and rebuilding process in the three counties in South Louisiana that were hardest hit by Hurricane Rita in 2005. [Citation: Tootle, D. M. Southern Rural Sociology. 2007;22(2):6-27.]

Evidence-based practice for telemental health - American Telemedicine Association (ATA)
This guide serves as both an operational best practices reference and an educational tool to aid practitioners in providing appropriate telehealth care for rural communities.

Faith-based organizations and pandemic preparedness - Health Progress
This article explains the importance of faith-based and community-based organizations as essential partners both in preparing for an influenza pandemic and in protecting the public's health and safety should one occur. [Author: Santibañez, S.]

Family financial management - Interventions following a disaster - University of Arizona Cooperative Extension
This fact sheet offers suggestions on how to respond to a financial crisis following a disaster. It explains suggestions on coping with financial stress and strategies to improve the situation. Resources applicable to agricultural crises are included. [Authors: Kenyon, D. B., & Borden, L. M.]

Guidelines for coping with disaster and mass casualty - Association of Professional Chaplains
This tip sheet offers guidelines to disaster responders who are working with faith-based organizations.

Idaho State University, Institute of Rural Health - Idaho State University, Institute of Rural Health (ISU, IRH)
The IRH website provides many helpful tools and links related to rural behavioral health care, specifically for rural communities in Idaho and the surrounding area. IRH project topics include suicide prevention, indigenous people, and telehealth.

Manage stress to increase farm safety - Iowa State University
This tip sheet from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach identifies common stressors for farmers, lists symptoms of stress, and suggests effective ways to manage stress. [Authors: Jolly, C., & Miller, L.]

National Association for Rural Mental Health - National Association for Rural Mental Health
NARMH is a membership organization that promotes the unification of members of the rural mental health community to develop and enhance mental health and substance abuse services in rural communities. This website contains information about NARMH membership, upcoming conferences, and publications related to rural mental health issues.

National Disaster Interfaiths Network - National Disaster Interfaiths Network (NDIN)
Founded in an effort to coordinate interfaith recovery work following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, NDIN is a national network of disaster interfaith organizations. The organization fosters information exchange between and among disaster interfaith organizations to help them better support disaster survivors. NDIN’s website features a resource library and directory of disaster interfaith organizations and networks.

Office of Rural Health Policy - Office of Rural Health Policy, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)
As part of HRSA, the Office of Rural Health Policy promotes better health services for rural Americans. The website contains information about funding opportunities, policy and research, and border health issues, as well as a directory of 2008 recipients of Rural Health Outreach grants.

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Last Updated: 10/27/2015