The mission of the center for rural health is to support and study.

The Center for Rural Health is striving to improve patient care and outcomes in rural communities by providing innovative and interdisciplinary research, education, and services through Augusta University’s resources, expertise, and community engagement. Augusta University’s Center for Rural Health Support and Study addresses ongoing concerns with the health and well-being of all Georgians, particularly those located in rural areas. Currently, there are major issues surrounding the provision of health services to our rural population. A multidisciplinary approach, along with further investigation to determine best practices and approaches, will be implemented to assist the stabilization of rural hospitals and help ensure that citizens of rural Georgia have access to care in their communities.

Task Force

Contact Us

Center for Rural Health

Catherine Clary

(706) 729-2370

Center Goals

Rural hospitals provide health care to 20% of Americans. Augusta University will support rural hospitals as they provide health care and emergency care to local citizens and serve as economic engines for their community. Housed in the Institute of Public and Preventive Health at Augusta University, one of the University System of Georgia’s research universities, we are uniquely positioned to assist in both addressing the current problems with rural health care and discovering future solutions.

Dr. Brooks Keel, President of Augusta University, has designated rural health as a priority for this institution and embraced the recommendations of the Task Force which he convened to discuss and study practices around stabilizing rural hospitals. The task force began work in February 2016 focused on critical access hospitals in Georgia and rural hospitals. Augusta University will make rural hospital stability an institutional priority, develop a model of clinical integration with selected rural hospitals, create and enhance academic programing and continuing education, and strengthen and expand Telehealth.

Associate Director

Catherine Clary currently serves as the Director for the Center for Rural Health Support and Study at Augusta University. Prior to her position as Associate Director, Catherine served as a physician liaison in Partnerships and Strategic Affiliations. Before coming to Augusta University, Catherine practiced law in Atlanta. As Associate Director of the Center for Rural Health Support and Study, Catherine provides leadership, direction and administrative management. She assists in planning, development and implementation of healthcare solutions for rural hospitals and health systems. Catherine collaborates with internal and external organizations to coordinate efforts for improving healthcare for rural Georgians.

Catherine serves on the Auction Committee for the American Heart Association Heart Ball, and served as team captain for the CSRA American Heart Association Heart Walk. She is a member of the State Bar of Georgia, the American Association of Physician Liaisons and the Augusta Metro Chamber’s Women in Business. In Atlanta, Catherine was a member of the Junior League of Atlanta, the Shepherd Center Junior Committee and served as a Trustee for Shingleroof Campground. Catherine received her undergraduate degree in journalism from the University of Georgia, and her juris doctorate from Georgia State University School of Law.

catherine clay