The Rural Health Education Network (RHEN) is making a significant impact in addressing health care workforce shortages in rural communities in Nebraska. This is accomplished through partnerships with rural communities, primary health care providers and Nebraska's Area Health Education Centers. For the past 20 years, we have been creating programs to develop a pipeline of Nebraska health care professionals. For instance, more than 70% of the Rural Health Opportunities Program (RHOP) graduates have practiced in a rural setting during some part of their career.
We believe in growing our own health professionals through:
- Science meets for eighth graders
- The Rural Health Opportunities Program (RHOP) for rural Nebraska residents interested in rural health care practice
- An annual career day for rural high school students
- Weeklong workshops for college students interested in learning more about agro-medicine, behavioral health, geriatric health careers and cultural competency
- Campus tours for groups from rural communities
- Teacher connections for Nebraska science teachers
- Student Association for Rural Health for UNMC health professions students
- Health professions "Student/Resident Experiences an Rotations in Community Health" (SEARCH)
- "Careers in Health Care, " a book for anyone interested in learning about health careers in Nebraska
This is an exciting time in the history of RHEN as we look forward to more opportunities to strengthen existing relationships and develop new partnerships and pipeline programs that will address health care workforce shortages in rural Nebraska.
Patrik Johansson, MD, MPH
Director, Rural Health Education Network
Patrik Johansson, M.D., M.P.H.