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Institute of Rural Health
Idaho State University

Institute of Rural Health


The mission of the IRH is to improve the health of communities through research, education, and service.


Our programs increase access to healthcare; enhance quality of care and health outcomes; improve the professional quality of life for providers; and seek to close the gap in health disparities— particularly among rural populations— by enhancing access to technology, endorsing a diversity of ideas, and encouraging cultural competency.


Guiding Values

  • Encourage improved health among rural residents through politically neutral approaches without bias or prejudice.
  • Empower racial, sexual, ethnic, and linguistic minorities and people with disabilities in a culturally sensitive manner to promote good health.
  • Diminish healthcare inequalities among rural populations by addressing health disparities and provider shortages that negatively impact overall health.
  • Improve the quality of life and health of rural populations through research in a variety of fields.
  • Encourage attitudinal and behavioral change through educational programs that include implementing the latest scientific theories and evidence.
  • Acknowledge that providing services and education and conducting research complement each other in enhancing healthcare delivery.

Lead State Agency

As part of the Traumatic Brain Injury State Implementation Partnership Grant Program, since July 2006, Idaho State University (ISU) has served as the lead state agency for traumatic brain injury in Idaho.

As the designated state agency for TBI, Idaho State University also leads the field with regard to the largest effort of any state to conduct needs and resource assessments within the TBI community. The IRH conducted an initial assessment in 2001 and annual assessments in 2003-2008 and 2011 with the purpose of analyzing unmet needs and changes in need over time. These extensive data resulted in a peer-reviewed publication in Brain Injury.

This project is supported in part by grant number 90TBSG0056-02-01 from the U.S Administration for Community Living (ACL), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) , Washington, D.C. 20201 and Idaho State University. This project was previously supported in part by grant # 1-H21-MC07735, using funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), Health Resources Services Administration's (HRSA's) Maternal and Child Health Bureau, and Idaho State University. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. The content contained herein are solely those of the authors and points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration for Community Living policy, the view or policies of the U.S. Government, the State of Idaho, or Idaho State University