Molly Vaughan Prengaman, associate professor for the School of Nursing, is celebrating the publication of her manuscript “Diverse Stakeholder Perspectives on Rural Health Care Reform in a U.S. State That Rejected the Affordable Care Act: A Case Study” to the peer reviewed journal Rural Nursing and Health Care.
Prengaman’s manuscript explores the perspectives of diverse rural healthcare stakeholders’ as the healthcare system transitions with the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Prengaman chose this area of study, as Idaho is considered “rural” according to the Census Bureau, considered conservative, and rejected Medicaid expansion which is described by some stakeholders as key to ensuring access to rural healthcare. She also saw a need for the study as rural states struggle to recruit and retain health care providers.
Prengaman interviewed 20 diverse stakeholders total. Seventeen of the 20 participants reside in areas of Idaho that meet the criteria of the federal rural definition. The three non-rural interviewees were included due to their role in rural health policy development in the state of Idaho. She used the interviews to identify perspectives and policy recommendations on key aspects of the U.S. healthcare system that are currently under debate.
As a result, perspectives of diverse stakeholders in Idaho did not align with the traditional conservative and liberal perspectives, but were more complex. The study revealed that the medical sovereignty and state sovereignty within the healthcare field which has significant impact on the perspectives of rural healthcare and policy.