See this commentary about the organic approach that Rural PREP has taken to promote health equity through education and training of a workforce in and with rural and underserved urban communities: An Organic Approach to Health Professions Education and Health Equity: Learning in and with Underserved Communities.


What we do

Rural PREP builds a scholarly community of practice that is evidence-based, community-engaged and practice-informed. Rural PREP seeks to improve and sustain health professions education by conducting and disseminating research that leads to the integration of evidence-based practices in the preparation, recruitment, and retention of providers for rural primary care practice

Our scholarly community of practice is evidenced based, community engaged, and practice informed.

We bring together educators, researchers, and practitioners to share evidence-based practices, generate new ideas for research and evaluation of rural primary care training, promote scholarly activity, and translate evidence into educational practice.

Rural PREP:

  • Conducts systems-level research to inform rural primary care training
  • Disseminates evidence-based practices and resources
  • Expands a community of practice to promote the widespread enhancement of primary care training to produce a diverse, high quality primary care workforce to care for rural communities

Who we are

Rural PREP’s mission is to improve and sustain rural health through community engagement and research in rural primary care health professions education.

Educators and researchers have sought for decades to understand how to attract more primary care providers to rural areas and prepare them better for rural practice. Research has demonstrated that where clinicians are educated is an important factor in future rural practice. Rural PREP is expanding the evidence base for how rural health professions education works, and more expansion is clearly needed.

A growing community of practice of rural health professions educators, researchers, students and rural community stakeholders is working to develop evidence-based practices for equipping primary care professionals for rural health care. Our work together has been honed through a series of shared research projects in the HRSA*-funded Rural Training Track (RTT) Technical Assistance Program 2010-2016,and the ongoing work of the University of Washington’s WWAMI Rural Health Research Center and The RTT Collaborative, a non-profit cooperative of individuals and organizations committed to rural health professions education across the U.S.. The RTT Collaborative is anchored at Ohio University.

Rural PREP is one of HRSA’s Academic Units for Primary Care Training and Enhancement (AU-PCTE). Read more about Academic Units here.

*U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration

Access to comprehensive, high-quality primary care is essential to improve health in rural America. Rural PREP aims to conduct research and engage communities of practice, disseminating innovative solutions and evidence-based practices to enhance the supply and quality of rural primary healthcare providers.

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A community of practice is an informal or organized learning community or virtual space in which members engage mutually in a common endeavor. The Rural PREP community of practice has brought together rural health professions educators, researchers and students who seek to improve rural primary care training and service delivery.

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