Georgia health officials to mark Rural Health day

Associated Press Published: November 11, 2012
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ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia health officials are preparing to recognize the contributions of doctors and other health care providers working in rural areas.

Thursday is the second annual Rural Health Day sponsored by the National Organization of State Rural Health Offices.

The Georgia Department of Community Health's State Office of Rural Health serves 109 of the state's 159 counties that have fewer than 35,000 people. There are 66 hospitals in rural counties in Georgia and 34 are critical access hospitals. More than two million people in Georgia count on the services of rural health care providers.

The State Office of Rural Health has a budget of more than $7 million in federal and state funds. It runs programs to develop financially viable, non-traditional regional systems to address the health needs of rural communities.