Within this study, health status of rural areas will be examined with global comparisons of Appalachia and a region within northern Thailand, focusing on health disparities and access to healthcare. This task will be accomplished by a discussion of pertinent experience in the rural healthcare field accompanied by a comprehensive literature review. Challenges and successes of public health initiatives like free clinics, health education and disease prevention programs will be identified. Additionally, participation in volunteer endeavors including free community clinics in Appalachia and efforts of national programs will be described. The project will gain the global perspective by describing the efforts observed while participating in a health internship in Thailand, featuring personal records of rural healthcare similarities and differences, including Thai methods of rural outreach and health education. The goal of this project is to identify similarities in health challenges among rural communities, examine the means to resolving rural healthcare inequality, develop generalizable conclusions for the field of rural health and learn how to utilize this knowledge in my journey to becoming a rural physician.

Semester/Year of Award

Fall 2019


Molly A. McKinney

Mentor Professional Affiliation

Health Promotion and Administration

Access Options

Restricted Access Thesis

Document Type

Bachelor Thesis

Degree Name

Honors Scholars

Degree Level



Biological Sciences