A Rural Socioeconomic Vulnerability and Resiliency Index and Associated Health Outcomes


Rural areas, especially in the Southeast, Appalachia and parts of the West, have worse VRI (Vulnerability and Resiliency Index) scores which are a measure of six socioeconomic indicators across counties in the United States. Better VRI scores were associated with better health outcomes (lower heart disease, cancer, and stroke death rates) across the rural-urban continuum. These analyses provide evidence to support the development of programs and policies that foster educational development, and economic diversity and vitality, as means of public health improvement, especially in rural areas in selected regions of the country.

West Virginia Rural Health Research Center
Joel Halverson, Michael Hendryx