Rural Health Advanced Practice Training (RHAPT)

Investigator: Erica Monasterio, RN, MN, FNP
Sponsor: U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration

Location(s): United States


The United States Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service estimates that more than 800,000 Californians live in rural areas spread across the state’s 163,695 square miles. Many of them live and work in one of the state’s 640 federally designated Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs) for primary care. With a new project – Rural Health Advanced Practice Training (RHAPT) – the UC San Francisco School of Nursing hopes to help fill the gaps by encouraging and training advanced practice nurses to work in rural settings.

The Rural Health Advanced Practice Training (RHAPT) project is an academic clinical partnership between the University of California, San Francisco School of Nursing Family Nurse Practitioner Program and the Redwood Community Health Coalition (RCHC), a network of 17 Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) in health professional shortage areas (HPSAs). This project will train advanced practice nursing students to provide high quality primary care to rural underserved populations and engage preceptors to mentor future primary care providers. RCHC’s network of community health centers in rural Northern California encompasses over 40 clinical sites. Within RCHC, we have partnered with 4 primary FQHC networks, all located in HPSAs. Each of these networks provides over 100,000 patient visits annually. Over 75% of patients served have incomes below the federal poverty level and 24-41% are uninsured due to the significant number of undocumented immigrants served. The UCSF FNP program focuses our training on preparing students to work with underserved populations, with 76% of our training sites located in Areas of Unmet Need (AUN) and from 58-83% of our graduates from the past 5 years currently working in AUN with vulnerable and underserved populations.