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This paper provides a review of the scholarly and applied literature published between 1970 and 1993 on health and health care access problems among racial and ethnic minority group members living in rural U.S. areas. Results on the distribution of specific illnesses and diseases, and utilization of medical services are summarized for two major minority groups—African Americans and Hispanic Americans. Findings generally document the expected pattern of rural and minority disadvantage. A review of the conceptual and methodological limitations of existing research suggests that research does not yet permit any clear understanding of the underlying structures and processes that give rise to racial health disparities. Very little is known about the health of rural minorities living in some areas of the country, for example, the west north central United States (Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota).