Request For Proposals

Want to spread your message to a diverse group of people interested in improving rural health? Always wanted to travel to one of the Coolest Small Towns in America? Now is your chance!
The WV Rural Health Association is currently seeking proposals for presentations at the 29th Annual WV Rural Health Conference to be held on the campus of WV School of Osteopathic Medicine in Lewisburg, WV from October 20-22, 2021.

Submission Due:  May 28, 2021

Send to:                     Kim McManaway


Questions:                 304-735-7491


The theme of this year’s conference is Reimagining Rural Health in WV: Responding to Unprecedented Challenges


  1. Leadership/Policy
  2. Clinical
  3. Future of Health Care/Innovation
  4. Diversity & Inclusion (new this year)

The deadline for presentation submissions is close of business, May 28th.

NOTE: This conference will be a hybrid format.  You will be expected to present live in person.  Live presentations will be recorded and broadcast to a virtual audience via the conference platform. The recordings will also be accessible through the WVRHA webpage. If you present in person, WVRHA will provide one night’s lodging.


West Virginia Drug Intervention Institute Launches Online Naloxone Training

Charleston, WV – The West Virginia Drug Intervention Institute (WV DII) has launched an online naloxone training course. Anyone throughout West Virginia is invited to participate in the training. Upon
completion of this online course, participants will be mailed a training certificate and two doses of auto-
injector naloxone free of charge.

Naloxone, an overdose reversal medication, is available in West Virginia through a standing order issued
by the State Health Officer, Dr. Ayne Amjad, or through area pharmacies without a prescription.
Recently, new legislation expanded the ability for certain non-profits and community organizations to
distribute naloxone to the community under Dr. Amjad’s standing order.

“Naloxone is a life-saving drug that we must continue to offer our loved ones and community members who are suffering from substance abuse disorder. We appreciate WV DII’s efforts to expand education around this life-saving intervention, especially in light of the tragic increase in overdose deaths,” said Dr.
Matthew Christensen, Director of the West Virginia Office of Drug Control Policy. “Recovery happens
every day and, in many instances, naloxone makes that possible.”

“While online (Zoom) trainings and face-to-face trainings are held throughout the state, the WV DII
wanted to create an opportunity for West Virginians to get trained on proper naloxone use and overdose
response immediately by creating an on-demand online course that can be accessed anytime and from any
computer,” explained WV DII President, Dr. Susan Bissett.
West Virginia experienced a 45% increase in the number of overdose deaths in 2020. In fact, according to
a report released by the United States National Office of Drug Control Policy last month, more West
Virginians died of drug overdoses last year than in any previous year on record—an estimated 1,275
deaths in 2020.
Media inquiries can be directed to the Institute’s President, Dr. Susan Bissett at: or
(304) 941-4182. To participate in the training visit:

The West Virginia Drug Intervention Institute (WV DII) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization located in
Charleston. The Institute’s mission is to reduce deaths in West Virginia from opioid and drug abuse by being (a) an independent advocate for life-enhancing drug policies, and practices, (b) a hub for coordinating drug response activities, and (c) an educational center to address the prevalence of drug abuse and the stigma of drug addiction.

Join Us! May 19, 2021 – Online Event

The State Rural Health Associations in Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia have teamed up to gather ideas and resources for addressing the opioid crisis and other Substance Use Disorders in the Appalachian Region.

We will be hosting the Appalachian Communities Opioid Response Summit on May 19th.

Registration:  Register here for just $15

This will be your opportunity to (virtually) learn from experts in the field, hold discussions about specific topics related to Substance Use Disorders and meet other stakeholders in the region.


9:00-9:15     Welcome and Introductions

9:15-10:00   Tools and Resources
– Michael Meit, ETSU Center for Rural Health Research

10:00 – 10:15  shift to breakout sessions

10:15-11:15     Breakout Session #1

11:15-12:15     Psychostimulants – New Risks, New Treatments
– Richard Rawson, Ph.D., Vermont Center for Behavior and Health

12:15-1:00      Break

1:00 – 2:00     Sustainability
– Pam Baston, JBS International

2:00 – 2:15      shift to breakout sessions

2:00 – 3:00     Breakout Session #2

3:00 – 3:15      shift to state conversations

3:15 – 5:00      Breakout Session #3 – State Conversations

Registration:  Register here for just $15

Strategic Planning Mini-Grants: Did you know ACOR has funds available for local Substance Use Disorder Coalitions to engage in strategic planning?  Whether you are just a small group of concerned citizens that want to do more or a large organization with full-time staff, this is an opportunity for you to plan your future impact. 

Details and application forms

WVRHA Individual Members Benefits

All WVRHA Individual Members will receive the following benefits:

  •  Receive regular e-newsletters with information about WVRHA’s activities as well as grant announcements, legislative updates, useful websites, etc.
  • Automatically become an Associate Member of the National Rural Health Association.
  • Attend educational webinars, conferences, forums, and workshops regarding rural health issues.
  • Access links to state and national resources.
  • Receive emails about state and national rural health care issues, webinars, conferences, and training.
  • WVRHA will pass information about your nonprofit organizations to our listserve.
  • Participation in WVRHA Annual Rural Workforce Day at the Legislature.
  • Free CEU’s from specific webinars and trainings.
  • All WVRHA members in good standing are eligible to run for a Board of Director position.
  • All WVRHA members may access the WV Health Data Portal.
  • All WVRHA members may request a letter of support for their grant and project applications.
  • Discounted registration fees.

Members will have a chance to:

  • View how WVRHA works to change rural health policy at the state and national legislative levels to improve the health of rural West Virginians.
  • Learn how WVRHA collaborates with a variety of partners to assist rural communities in improving their health and well-being.

Information, Data, and Tools to Support COVID-19 Vaccine Acceptance in Underserved Communities

Friday, April 16, 2021

1:15-2:45 PM EDT

COVID inoculation rates in U.S. minority communities are dismal, hovering around 8%. They are currently eight times higher in white communities. Studies show that causes include misinformation about vaccine effectiveness and safety, lack of trust in government institutions and drug companies, the digital divide, language barriers, inaccessibility of vaccination sites, deportation fears by undocumented immigrants, identifying and reaching underserved communities to address equity, among others.

Join the American Public Health Association, the GWU Milken Institute School of Public Health, MDB, and SSF, in a free 90-minute webinar explaining tools and approaches to raise vaccination rates in underserved communities.