December, 2022: Celebrating the 2022 National Rural Health Day Community Stars


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Celebrating the 2022 National Rural Health Day Community Stars

Since 2010 the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health has designated the 3rd Thursday in November as National Rural Health Day to celebrate the rural leaders and champions in rural communities. This year the Arizona Telemedicine Program and the SWTRC joined with the Arizona Rural Health Association to present “The Rural Health Landscape” webinar with Alan Morgan, CEO of the National Rural Health Association.
This webinar streamed live to a national audience on November 16th and the recording and presentation slides are available at Previous Webinars and Workshops |
Each year the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health selects a Community Star from each of the 50 states. The 2022 Community Star report includes stories of how each Community Star is working to improve life in their rural community.

Congratulations to all 2022 Community Stars!
SWTRC Region 2022 Community Star Awardees:

Family Nurse Practitioner
Community Health Center of Yavapai

Dr. Amber Bahm works in a designated medically underserved community. As the only nurse practitioner in the sole community health center in the Verde Valley of Northern Arizona, she treats some of the most vulnerable and high-risk community members. Working to advance equitable care for every patient, she advocates for community and grant funding to purchase medication or home monitoring equipment for those with unmet needs.

Tammy Dunker
Assisted Living Director
Rangely District Hospital/Eagle Crest Assisted Living
Tammy Dunker is not only an outstanding rural health leader but also a board member of the Colorado Rural Health Center, serving as Secretary/Treasurer as well as Policy and Legislative Committee lead. Located in a seasonal tourist area, many residents in Rangely struggle to afford necessities, like food priced for pockets much deeper than their own.
Joan Summers Hall
Nevada Rural Hospital Partners
Reno, Nevada
Joan Summers Hall is a champion of change. Since 2010, Joan has led the Nevada Rural Hospital Partners (NRHP), a statewide consortium dedicated to maintaining access to hospital-based healthcare services in rural areas. Through her leadership, NRHP has significantly improved the viability of the state’s rural hospitals and healthcare access by facilitating shared services, resources and advocacy. As a result, hospitals can operate at a level that would not be financially possible on an individual basis. Nevada’s rural hospitals benefit daily from Joan’s and NRHP’s accomplishments, service, and expertise.
Cibola County Fire & Emergency Services COVID-19 Taskforce
Grants, New Mexico
Cibola County Fire and Emergency Services COVID-19 Taskforce was a small group of firefighters and EMS providers who worked with New Mexico’s Department of Health and Cibola County’s Public Health Nurse to design and implement a county-wide effort to vaccinate residents. The COVID-19 Taskforce members volunteered countless hours of staffing, promoting vaccination efforts, and addressing questions from those hesitant about vaccinating against the virus. Each team member vaccinated hundreds of county residents while fulfilling their career and volunteer responsibilities in public health, public safety, and other disciplines. In addition, the Taskforce handled all aspects of the vaccine distribution program, including vaccine acquisition, advertising, site logistics, communication, and more.

The Southwest Telehealth Resource Center serves Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and the Four Corners Region. 

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Questions, comments, ideas?
Reach out to Mari Herreras at mherreras@telemedicine.arizona