F. Marie Hall Institute for Rural and Community Health
The F. Marie Hall Institute for Rural and Community Health at TTUHSC was established in February 2006 with a donation from Ms. Hall to leverage the existing resources of TTUHSC’s Office of Rural and Community Health and expand the impact of Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in addressing the needs of the region and developing solutions that affect rural health beyond the bounds of West Texas.
The Institute for Rural and Community Health is a multidisciplinary group of professionals that are the focal point of key programs in four major areas—the West Texas Area Health Education Center, Rural Health Research, the West Texas Health Information Technology Regional Extension Center, and Telemedicine. These programs integrate services to bring innovative solutions to the broad spectrum of health-related challenges across West Texas by synthesizing the needs of the region and by creating both technological and hands-on face-to-face opportunities to connect education, research and delivery of patient care to meet the local needs of communities—while at the same time training the future health and research professionals who will serve not only West Texas, but also the entire country.
- West Texas Area Health Education Center program and its five regional offices serve as the Health Sciences Center’s outreach arm to engage communities in assessing their healthcare needs and to coordinate the pipeline of the healthcare workforce for the region.
- Rural Health Research Group, and its core program Project FRONTIER, focuses on topics of study in aging and dementia, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, obesity, smoking and alcohol, along with how each of these factors has a differential impact based on gender and ethnicity, as well as geographic location.
- West Texas Health Information Technology Regional Extension Center assists primary care providers across West Texas with adopting and achieving meaningful use with electronic health records (EHR). The deployment of EHR technology will result in advanced population health outcomes through more efficiently coordinated patient care as well as improvements in patient safety and more effective health management of chronic diseases.
- Telemedicine electronically transports primary and specialty medical care into the remote areas of West Texas. People who live hours from advanced medical care—or even basic medical services—can directly access high-quality medical expertise without leaving their communities.