Our rural community is a wonderful place to live and work. It is a small, farming area where neighbors know each other, listen to each other, respect each other, and work together to benefit the greater good. It is also a great place to start a business and test your “entrepreneurial spirit”. This community, and others like ours, provide the rest of the country with a wealth of services and commodities, and they are the economic engine that has helped the United States become the world economic power it is today.

These rural communities also have unique healthcare needs. Today more than ever, rural communities must address accessibility issues, a lack of healthcare providers, the needs of an aging population suffering from a greater number of chronic conditions, and larger percentages of un- and underinsured citizens. And rural hospitals – which are often the economic foundation of their communities in addition to being the primary providers of care – struggle daily as declining reimbursement rates and disproportionate funding levels make it challenging to serve their residents.

That is why the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health sets aside the third Thursday of every November – November 18, 2021 – to celebrate National Rural Health Day. National Rural Health Day is an opportunity to “Celebrate the Power of Rural” by honoring the selfless, community-minded, “can do” spirit that prevails in rural America. But it also gives us a chance to bring to light the unique healthcare challenges that rural citizens face – and highlight the efforts of rural healthcare providers, State Offices of Rural Health, and other rural stakeholders to address those challenges.

Audubon County Memorial Hospital and Clinics has a mission to provide “excellence with quality and compassion to those we serve.” Our services include emergency services, acute care, skilled nursing services, laboratory, radiology, wound care, infusion therapy, sleep studies, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and surgical services. In addition, we offer specialty services including orthopedic, mental health, ophthalmology, pain management, podiatry, dermatology, oncology, spine surgery, cardiology, head and neck surgery, ENT, OB/GYN, and urology. We also operate two rural health clinics, Audubon Family Health Clinic and Exira Medical Clinic. Our clinics offer complete care from newborns to senior adults by providing well child check-ups, age-appropriate preventative care, sports and school physicals, immunizations, and treatment of occasional and ongoing illnesses.

For more information, contact Audubon County Memorial Hospital and Clinics in Audubon at 712-563-4611 and in Exira at 712-268-5348.