About

WWAMI RHRC’s Mission

The mission of the Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana, Idaho (WWAMI) Rural Health Research Center (RHRC) is to improve and sustain rural health through research that engages policymakers, planners, and practitioners advancing equity in rural access to care.

About the Research Center

The WWAMI RHRC conducts policy-oriented research with an emphasis on the rural health care workforce and access to care. Established in 1988, the WWAMI RHRC is based in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine and works closely with our co-located research centers, the Collaborative for Rural Primary care Research, Education, and Practice (Rural PREP) and the University of Washington Center for Health Workforce Studies. We also collaborate with and serve as a resource to other academic departments and schools, government agencies, professional organizations, and other stakeholders regionally and nationally.

The WWAMI RHRC team spans multiple disciplines, including sociology, biostatistics, geography, health economics, medicine, and allied health, benefiting from the expertise of clinician researchers in many of our studies. Our major areas of inquiry include:

  • Rural health care provider supply and demand
  • Training, recruitment, and retention of rural health professionals
  • Geographic access to home health, obstetrical, behavioral health, and emergency medical services
  • Access to specific therapies and treatments, such as recommended cancer screening and medication for opioid use disorder

In all of our work, we seek to provide policymakers, planners, and providers with evidence to inform health care policy and practice to improve rural health.

Leadership

Davis Patterson, PhD Research Associate Professor, Family Medicine Director – WWAMI Rural Health Research Center, Director – Collaborative for Rural Primary care Research, Education, and Practice (Rural PREP) Profile
Holly Andrilla, MS Research Scientist Deputy Director – WWAMI Rural Health Research Center, Investigator – Collaborative for Rural Primary care Research, Education, and Practice (Rural PREP) Profile

Research Team

Faculty

David Evans, MD Associate Professor and Rosenblatt Family Endowed Professor in Rural Health, Director – RUOP | Underserved Pathway Investigator – WWAMI Rural Health Research Center Profile
Eric H. Larson, PhD Research Professor, Investigator – WWAMI Rural Health Research Center Profile
Tracy Mroz, PhD, OTR/L Assistant Professor – Rehabilitation Medicine, Investigator – WWAMI Rural Health Research Center

Staff

Dinah Aldrich Dissemination Manager – WWAMI Rural Health Research Center Profile
Lisa Garberson, PhD, MBA Research Scientist – WWAMI Rural Health Research Center Profile
Gina Keppel, MPH Research Scientist Profile
Beverly Marshall, BA Program Assistant Profile
Susan M Skillman, MS Senior Deputy Director – Center for Health Workforce Studies, Research Scientist – WWAMI Rural Health Research Center & Rural PREP Profile