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Our Community: Mid-Hudson Valley

Residents of the Mid-Hudson Valley enjoy an affordable cost of living, excellent school systems and a strong sense of community. The region comprises several small cities and towns, all with convenient access to superb scenery and outdoor recreation, as well as cultural attractions. As New York’s first capital, Kingston mixes modern living with beautiful historical districts. Nearby, New Paltz offers exceptional hikes through the Shawangunk Mountains, a unique town center, and educational, recreational and social opportunities with the State University of New York at New Paltz. Woodstock has a thriving arts culture that attracts world-renowned writers, musicians, artists and film-makers.

Unfortunately, lower-income and medically underserved residents of the Mid-Hudson Valley experience greater difficulty accessing health care and higher burdens of chronic diseases and other health conditions. The vast majority of patients served by the Institute of Family Health in this region reside in Ulster and Dutchess counties, where residents are primarily White. However, Hispanic and Asian populations in the Mid-Hudson region are growing at a substantial rate (74% and 64%, respectively) resulting in an increasingly diverse community.

Residents Ulster County Dutchess County New York State
Percent of people living below the poverty level 13% 9.1% 15%
Per capita income $30,232 $33,037 $32,104
Percent who do not have a regular doctor or other health care provider 18% 15% 17%
Percent uninsured 13% 11% 10%
Number of Physicians per 100,000 population 66.6 63.2 79.9

As residents of rural and semi-rural areas, community residents face a number of barriers when accessing healthcare. According to the University of Albany, there are more than twice as many physicians per 100,000 population in urban NYS counties than in rural counties, and as demand for primary care services grow, shortages of primary care physicians are expected to worsen.  Many residents are isolated from medical services, and have limited access to transportation. The Institute is one of the only healthcare providers in the region that accepts patients regardless of their ability to pay, and for this reason, it serves a disproportionate number of patients from underserved communities.

Many residents suffer from health problems prevalent in low-income rural and semi-rural areas, including high rates of mental health problems such as depression, alcohol and substance abuse; teen pregnancy and low birth weight babies; and diabetes and hypertension. Each of the Institute’s Mid-Hudson Valley practices addresses many of these issues by providing a full range of primary medical care, mental health, and social services. In addition, many residents trained at the Mid-Hudson Family Practice Residency Program continue to serve the region after graduation.


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