National Rural Health Day | Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center

Texas Tech University Health Science Center join communities across America in celebration of National Rural Health Day (NRHD) on November 16, 2023. The National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH) and rural-focused organizations throughout the United States set aside the third Thursday of November to recognize NRHD. This annual event is an opportunity to celebrate the “Power of Rural” and honor the individuals and organizations dedicated to addressing the unique healthcare needs of nearly 61 million people living in rural America. Permian Basin health care employers have been invited to participate, meet graduating health career students, and share the benefits of serving in a rural community at the recruitment fair that afternoon.

John Henderson

John Henderson, President/CEO of the Texas Organization of Rural & Community Hospitals (TORCH), will be the inaugural event’s guest speaker. TORCH provides advocacy to elected officials and governmental/regulatory entities on rural and community health issues; develops specialized programs, education, activities and services for Texas’ 158 rural and community hospitals; supports local access and delivery of health care service to the community residents and leverages the collective power of rural. Prior to joining TORCH in April of 2018, John served as CEO at his hometown hospital, Childress Regional Medical Center, for 16 years. During that time, he served as chairman of both the TORCH and THA boards.

Sid Miller

“I encourage all Texans to celebrate the "Power of Rural" on National Rural Health Day,” Commissioner Miller said. “One in every five Americans lives in a rural community, and it is important to recognize, understand, and help meet their individual healthcare needs.

TDA is home to the Texas State Office of Rural Health, where my staff works diligently alongside local healthcare partners to provide access to quality mental and physical health care for rural communities across the state. Not only does the agriculture industry have some of the highest rates of fatalities and injuries across all age groups, but also one of the highest rates of suicide. Our AgriStress Helpline (833-897-2474) is a great resource for Texas farmers and ranchers to access affordable and quality mental healthcare tailored specifically to the agriculture industry.  I am grateful for the work of Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center and the Texas Organization of Rural and Community Hospitals, which are equally committed to the overall well-being of rural Texans. Together, we can make a substantial difference.”

-Sid Miller
Texas Agriculture Commissioner
Dr. Timothy Benton

"It is of vital importance that we ensure all rural Texans have the opportunity to be healthy and have access to affordable, quality health care regardless of where they call home.

Expanding access to care in the region, whether through telehealth interactions with family physicians and subspecialists via TTUHSC’s telehealth hubs, in one-on-one interactions with our Medicine on the Move teams, or via one of the 12 rural residents supporting hospitals and clinics across the Permian Basin is core to our mandate. Rural residents have had more than 20,000 patient encounters since the program’s inception, supporting communities that support the country with food, fuel and fiber. Our partners on the ground are invaluable. TTUHSC is proud to recognize the incredible work of health professionals and volunteers in our community on National Rural Health Day and throughout the year.”

-Dr. Timothy Benton
TTUHSC-Permian Basin Regional Dean

“Our great university works each day to fulfill our vision to transform health care through innovation and collaboration in our largely rural and underserved regions. The outstanding health care providers who serve our rural communities embody the pioneering spirit that contributes to these providers as 'heroes' for their patients. National Rural Health Day serves as a reminder of their commitment in serving their communities and the importance of a sustainable health care workforce as we expand access to care."

-TTUHSC President Lori Rice-Spearman, Ph.D.