Updated: Oct 21, 2021
Unified Healthcare for the Rural Underserved (UHRU.org) is an Athens based non-profit founded with the mission to improve the health and well-being of rural and underserved people worldwide. Our goal is to reduce health disparities by increasing access to health care among underserved communities in Georgia and rural India. We are building a Pathway to Health so all people can enjoy a healthy and gratifying life.
We need your help!
To provide equal access to health care for rural and underserved Georgians, we need to build more coalitions and partnerships throughout Georgia to expand the reach and impact of our programs.
To reduce colorectal cancer deaths in rural and underserved Georgians, we need to initiate patient navigation services in our current program to facilitate patient engagement and cancer screenings.
To prevent the need for dialysis for underserved community members, we need to implement new chronic disease prevention programs, with a special focus on new chronic kidney disease.
We created the Georgia Colon Cancer Prevention Project to increase access to colorectal cancer screening among the underserved. Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in men and women, and it is the third leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. But there is good news…colorectal cancer can be prevented! There are many screening tests available, and these tests can detect cancer early. With early detection, it is easier to treat or prevent cancer by removing precancerous polyps. All adults aged 45 and older should be screened for colorectal cancer, and those at high-risk for colorectal cancer should be screened even earlier.
Despite colorectal cancer being a preventable disease, only about 65% of Georgians are being screened, and among our underserved community members only about 35% are being screened. We want to reduce colorectal cancer deaths in rural and underserved Georgians, and we encourage all Georgians to get screened. For the underserved, we partner with federally qualified health centers and charitable health clinics to increase access to colorectal cancer screening. We have formed a coalition in Athens that includes Athens Nurses Clinic, Athens Neighborhood Health Center, Mercy Health Center, Piedmont’s Clay Community Care Clinic and local gastroenterologists to provide this life-changing and life-saving screening. We donate our award-winning screening program to our partners to ensure our underserved community members receive this much needed care.
Chronic kidney disease also disproportionately affects underserved communities. This disease includes conditions that damage kidneys and leads to a gradual loss of kidney function. The leading causes of kidney failure are diabetes and high blood pressure. When these two diseases are controlled, kidney disease can often be slowed or prevented. Serious kidney disease can lead to complete kidney failure and the need for dialysis or kidney transplant. We want to implement new chronic disease programs, with a special focus on chronic kidney disease and prevent the need for dialysis among our underserved community members.
We hope you will consider building a pathway with us to make a significant and positive impact on the lives of underserved Georgians and their families.