Air Force health care leader joins Pennsylvania Office of Rural Health

October 08, 2018

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Jennifer Edwards joined the Pennsylvania Office of Rural Health (PORH) in August 2018 as the office’s rural health systems manager and deputy director. She will contribute to PORH’s nationally recognized leadership in advocacy and technical support to the state’s Critical Access Hospitals and other rural hospitals and health systems, and will be an integral part of PORH’s role in increasing access to health care in rural areas.  

Jennifer-Edwards-PORH-2018

Jennifer Edwards has joined the Pennsylvania Office of Rural Health. She will contribute to PORH’s nationally-recognized leadership in advocacy and technical support to the state’s Critical Access Hospitals and other rural hospitals and health systems, and will be an integral part of PORH’s role in increasing access to health care in rural areas.  

IMAGE: Provided

Edwards served as a Lt. Colonel in the Air Force where she spent 13 years as a medical service corps officer in health care administration. She worked in clinics and medical centers in a variety of roles ranging from practice management, to medical logistics, emergency management, and aeromedical evacuation.

Edwards deployed to Central America, where she led teams providing health care in very remote areas, and to Afghanistan, where she coordinated aeromedical evacuation of United States and allied wounded warriors. In her last assignment, Edwards served as the Department of Defense’s regional liaison to the Veterans Administration for the Gulf Coast region in Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana.

Through her deployments and tours of duty, Edwards coordinated services for patients from rural and underserved communities and understands the challenges they face and how to work to improve or resolve those issues.

Originally from Pottstown, Pennsylvania, Edwards received her undergraduate degree in business and human resource management and a master of business administration in finance and management, both from the University of Alaska Fairbanks. 

PORH was established in 1991 as a partnership between the federal government, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and Penn State to enhance the health status of rural Pennsylvanians and strengthen the delivery and quality of care in the communities in which they live. Each year, the organization presents awards to recognize rural health programs and individuals who have made substantial contributions to rural health in Pennsylvania. To learn more about the Pennsylvania Office of Rural Health, visit porh.psu.edu.  

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Last Updated October 08, 2018