Health Access

Health Access

North Dakota is a large rural state experiencing population loss and the struggles of the agricultural economy — as well as new investments and rising wages. Access to health care is consistently identified as a top problem not only in agricultural areas and on the four reservations, but also among vulnerable populations in the towns. As the Legislature considers bills that may address some of the problems in access to health care, we hope these stories and comments will inform the discussion.

Health Access Programs were produced with the help of Sound Partners for Community Health, a program of the Benton Foundation. Support for Health Access was provided by a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Producers who worked on the project include Skip Wood, Meg Luther Lindholm, Sarah Morrau and Kris Kerzman.

Below you’ll find radio programming that explains the problem and explores solutions.

Photo essay
to accompany John Eagleshield’s story from Standing Rock.
Click here to listen to the entire 24 minute audio diary.

Date Description Length Audio file
12/12/2006 Health Mentors learn about other cultures, develop connections in their
communities, and help people who are new to this country. Sarah Morrau
talks to Rose, a health mentor who has been on both sides of this family
healthcare program.
5:10 Rose
11/22/2006 A special “Hear It Now” features two “Health Access” interviews by Sarah Morrau that examine mental health. First, Susan Helgeland, the executive director of the Mental Health Association in North Dakota, discusses recent developments in mental health care. Second, Sarah introduces
us to Gail Griffith, author of Will’s Choice, a book about her son’s suicide
attempt and recovery that addresses the stigma around mental illness and suicide.
53:00 Nov. 22 Hear It Now
10/23/2006 North Dakota State Representative Louise Potter comments on ways employers are trying to reduce health costs in this interview with Sarah Morrau. 5:08 Louise
10/4/2006 Another Health Mentor perspective from Hesha Tile of Kurdistan in this
conversation with Sarah Morrau.
6:38 Hesha
10/2/2006 Sarah Morrau visits with health mentor Mejra Elezovic, who hails from
8:44 Mejra
9/27/2006 Helping refugees navigate our healthcare system is just one of the goals
of the health mentor program at Family HealthCare Center in Fargo. Sarah Morrau talks to Abby Gold, a consultant with the program.
13:08 AbbyGold
8/14/2006 Sarah Morrau interviews Marlene DeWinter about health care in Belgium 14:00 Belgium
7/13/2006 An audio diary from John Eagle Shield, director of Community Health
Programs for the Standing Rock reservation, prepared by producer Meg Luther Lindholm.
25:00 JohnEagleShield
6/27/2006 Preliminary recommendations are in from the Citizen’s HealthCare Working Group. Sarah Morrau visits with one of the participants in the group’s recent hearing in Fargo, 21 year old Farhiyo Abdulkarim, an NDSU student. 6:26 InterimRec
6/12/2006 Helping people obtain health care – Sarah Morrau interviews Julie Haugen
of the Dakota Communities Access Program.
15:48 JulieHaugen
6/16/2006 Matt Olien visits with Kim Randall of Caring for Children at this year’s
Kids Fest.
2:00 KimRandall
6/6/2006 A day in the life of the Family HealthCare Center in Fargo from guest
reporter Kris Kerzman.
8:50 FHC
5/23/2006 Sarah Morrau visits with with Dr. John Baird, health officer for Fargo
Cass Public Health, about an upcoming seminar that will address the problem of those without health insurance.
12:00 DrJohnBaird
5/18/2006 For another perspective on access to healthcare in North Dakota, Sarah
Morrau visits with Wade Hannon, associate professor of counseling at NDSU. He is also a Green Party and Union activist.
13:32 hannon
5/15/2006 Sarah Morrau visits with State Senator Judy Lee, who attended the recent
Citizen’s Healthcare Working Group meeting. Lee shares some thoughts about the healthcare challenges facing North Dakota, and speculates on possible legislative action.
15:45 judylee
5/01/2006 The 2006 Womens Health Summit in Fargo … an on-location Health Access special edition of the “Hear It Now” show with host Merrill
40:00 Hear
It Now
5/1/2006 The national debate on health care made its way to Fargo on April 22nd
when people from North Dakota shared their ideas on how to lower the cost of health care around the country. Meg Luther Lindholm reports.
5:27 citizens
healthcare working group
3/30/2006 “Health: At What Cost?” A documentary from Meg Luther-Lindholm. 23:00 Documentary
02/14/2005 Health Forum Preview on Hear It Now. Host Merrill Piepkorn is joined
by Sherlyn Dahl of the Family HealthCare Center and Karen Larson of the
Community HealthCare Association of the Dakotas.
24min. forumpvw.wma
03/05/2005 Bismarck Health Forum … numerous speakers share the story of Community Healthcare Centers in North Dakota. 1hr. 12min. forum.wma
03/8/2005 Merrill pays a visit to the 2005 Annual Dakota Conference on Rural and
Public Health. Our guests are Brad Gibbens, Associate Director of the
Center for Rural Health; and Lynette Dixon who will be taking over for
Brad as conference chair. We’ll also visit with Marlene Miller, Flex Program
Coordinator for the Center; Mary Amundson, Assistant professor at the
Center for Rural Health; and Barb Groutt, director of the Healthcare Quality Improvement Project.
45min. 1441RHConf.wma
03/22/2005 There’s been a sharp rise in the number of people without health insurance seeking medical care at community clinics — a growing issue for North Dakota. Sherlyn Dahl of the Family HealthCare Center in Fargo will be our guest. 29min. 1451sherlyn.wma
04/12/2005 Meg Luther Lindholm guest hosts as we visit with Sharon Ericson, CEO
of Valley Community Health Center in Northwood, and Helen Reddy, a physician’s assistant at Family HealthCare Center, Fargo. We’ll learn about the role community health centers play in the state, and how they differ from other models of care.
32min. 1462.mp3
04/22/2005 Tracy Fugere reports on a Native American health survey. 2min 15sec tracyfeature42205.wma
05/17/2005 Meg Luther-Lindholm guest hosts on Hear It Now as we discuss community ownership of Community Health Centers. Joining Meg are Gary Kopp, CEO of Northland Community Health Center, Turtle Lake; and Joan Anderson, Northland board member. 40min 16sec 1487Northland.wma
05/19/2005 Merrill Piepkorn travels to the Community Health Center in Beulah for
a special documentary, “Health Care in Coal Country”
48min 43sec 1489.wma
05/16/2005 through 05/19/2005 Merrill also prepared four shorter features that highlight aspects of
his visit to the Community Health Center in Beulah.








06/14/2005 Bill Thomas visits with Karen Larson, deputy director/ND director, Community HealthCare Association of the Dakotas; and Tom Nehring of the Coal Country Community Health Centers. What are the concerns in accessing care in rural ND? Why are other small communities showing interest in the community health center model? The answers to those questions and more. 24min 1506RuralAccess
07/13/2005 Sherlyn Dahl, executive director of the Family HealthCare Center in
Fargo, comments on the diversity and needs she sees at the center, and
raises questions about the future.
2:51 Sherlyn1
07/20/2005 Sherlyn Dahl comments on the increase in the number of people without
health insurance, and on the funding challenges.
3:27 Sherlyn2
08/04/2005 Patient Lynn Gifford shares her story … why Community Health Centers
are critically important.
2:28 Lynn
08/09/2005 Margaret Mowery of the Dakota Medical Foundation comments on the problem of children without health insurance. 2:40 Mowery
08/10/2005 It’s National Community Health Center Week, but a new report raises
concerns about the future of Community Health Centers. Sherlyn Dahl and Karen Larson visit with news director Dave Thompson on Hear It Now.
25 min CHC
10/17/2005 News story previewing North Dakota’s first statewide summit on community solutions for health care insurance coverage. VERSION 1 1:01 N-INS-CONF-1
10/17/2005 News story previewing North Dakota’s first statewide summit on community solutions for health care insurance coverage. VERSION 2 :54 N-INS-CONF-2
10/18/2005 Merrill interviews speakers at the Community Solutions for Healthcare
25:28 Health
Conf. #1
10/19/2005 Merrill travels to Bismarck to do his show on location from the Community
Solutions for Healthcare Convention.
45:55 Health
Conf. #2
10/24/2005 News story on recent initiatives to help North Dakota children receive
health insurance. VERSION 1.
1:23 kids-cov1
10/24/2005 News story on recent initiatives to help North Dakota children receive
health insurance. VERSION 2.
1:12 kids-cov2
11/29/2005 A new survey provides a snapshot of Native American health issues. A discussion on Hear It Now with James Thomas, Native American program coordinator for the Family Healthcare Center; Leander Russell “Russ” McDonald, assistant professor, National Resource Center on Native American Aging, Center of Rural Health, UND School of Medicine & Health Sciences; and Chester Fritz Distinguished Professor, Richard Ludtke, professor of sociology, community medicine and rural health. 24:15 1623NAHealth
2/6/2006 State Senator Tim Mathern commentary on a proposal to provide a more
affordable type of health insurance.
5:04 Sen
2/23/2006 Joan Altenbernd, executive director of Migrant Health Services, shares
an essay on on the difficulties of obtaining heatlh care in rural areas..
3:05 joan
2/27/2006 Chuck Stebbins of the Freedom Resource Center in Fargo shares an essay
regarding the importance of funding home care, not just nursing home care.
4:35 chuck
3/15/2006 Commentary from Shannon Heick, community resource coordinator for Meritcare Hospital. 3:24 shannon
3/20/2006 Health care community meetings are being held across the country. We’ll
learn about this effort from Margaret Mowery of the Dakota Medical Foundation and Karen Larson of the Community HealthCare Association of the Dakotas.
25:00 March
20 HIN
3/20/2006 Commentary from Dick Hedahl. 4:42 dick

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Dakota State University
and the University of North Dakota.

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