[August 19] The Impact of COVID-19 in Rural America

Description: Challenged by limited resources and growing rates of COVID-19 rural America is confronting the pandemic through innovative strategies with public and private partnerships. This session will highlight the engagement of state agencies and nonprofits as they mobilize their collective resources to address COVID-19.

Date & Time: August 19, 2020 at 1pm EST (12pm CST/11am MST/10am PST/9am AK/8am HI)

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Invited Speakers:

Allison Owen
Deputy Director NC Department of Health & Human Services Office of Rural Health

Allison began her tenure with the Office of Rural Health in April 2005 as a performance-based contracts specialist. She has focused on process improvement, data analysis, performance measurement, and innovative projects to ensure better service delivery. Currently, Allison leads the Health Information Technology, Analytics and Innovations, Rural Health Centers Operations, Business, and Contracts teams. Prior to joining the Office, Allison worked as a budget analyst in Fairfax County, Virginia and as a high school English instructor in Cary, North Carolina. Allison earned a Master of Public Administration degree from Georgia Southern University where she graduated Summa Cum Laude and a Bachelor of Arts in Education from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Growing up in rural eastern North Carolina gave Allison a love of wide-open spaces (and fear of spiders).
Trails, beaches, and charming small towns are some of her favorite places.

Norma Marti
Office of Rural Health

Norma is a bilingual-bicultural (Spanish/Puerto Rican) professional with over 15 years of addressing Latinx/Hispanic health equity.  Her focus on engaging this historically marginalized population with resources in health care.  Norma has conducted hundreds of grassroots presentations as well as attending national, state, and local conferences to be the voice for those whose voices are not often heard or included.  Also, she has staffed hundreds of exhibits/health fairs across the state’s minority/grassroots communities before retiring from NC DHHS Division of Public Health.  Norma uses evidence-based outreach strategies based on social marketing principles to inform limited-English proficient, refugee, and immigrant populations about enrollment and benefits in state’s public health plans. She has over 20 years of experience with training for and supervision of both qualitative and quantitative data collection methodologies and translation/interpretation of survey instruments (in both English and Spanish) in public health and non-profit sectors




Clinical Scholars is a national leadership program for experienced health care providers supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.


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