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Rural Assistance Center Partners

RAC is a collaboration of the University of North Dakota Center for Rural Health (UND-CRH), the Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI), and the federal Office of Rural Health Policy (ORHP) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and is located at the University of North Dakota. Funding comes from ORHP and stems from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Rural Initiative, which seeks to create a more integrative framework for the Department's rural portfolio-a portfolio including some 225 programs.

The Center for Rural Health

crh logoThe Center for Rural Health, University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences serves as the lead organization for the Rural Assistance Center (RAC) initiative. Locating the administrative base for RAC in the Great Plains state of North Dakota, enables the project to capitalize on the Center for Rural Health's first hand experience with rural health issues, including challenges and innovations in rural health care.

The Center was established in 1980 to serve the people of North Dakota, the Plains, and the nation by researching rural health issues, analyzing health policy, strengthening local capacity in the health arena, developing community-based health care alternatives, and providing leadership in the field of rural health. The Center is North Dakota's federally designated State Office of Rural Health and connects the School of Medicine and Health Sciences and the university to rural communities and their health institutions to facilitate developing and maintaining rural health delivery systems.

The Center focuses on four core areas:

  • education and information dissemination,
  • program development and community assistance,
  • research, and
  • policy analysis.

For more information, call (701) 777-3848 or visit the Center on the web at

The Rural Policy Research Institute

rupri logoThe Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI) is a multi-state interdisciplinary research consortium, sponsored by Iowa State University, the University of Missouri, and the University of Nebraska. RUPRI's mission is to provide objective analysis and facilitate public dialogue concerning the impacts of public policy on rural people and places.

Since its founding in 1991, RUPRI has developed a uniquely collaborative research approach, delivering ongoing, timely, and decision-relevant policy analysis to policy makers on all levels. Collaborative research relationships exist with numerous institutions, organizations and individual scientists worldwide.

Two RUPRI projects play a significant role in RAC:

  • The RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis provides legislative analysis and advice to national policy makers as they debate issues related to rural health care access, provision, and financing.
  • Center for Applied Research and Environmental Systems (CARES) addresses spatial and temporal dimensions of issues impacting rural America by incorporating Internet-based geographic information systems, remote sensing technologies, and other data visualization and analytic tools. The Center's principle goal is to rapidly transform data and static reports into interactive visualization and analytic tools for use in public policy decision support.

For more information, call (573) 882-0316 or visit RUPRI on the web at

Phone: 1-800-270-1898

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Funding for this project was supported by Grant Number U56RH05539 from the Office of Rural Health Policy, Health Resources and Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The contents of this website are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the funder.