Sofia Gratas is the rural health care reporter at Georgia Public Broadcasting in Macon, Georgia. She started working in public radio as an intern with NPR-affiliate station WUGA in Athens, Georgia, and later interned with Georgia Public Broadcasting. A graduate of the University of Georgia with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in ecology, Gratas worked at the student-run paper, The Red & Black, in multiple roles covering local government, crime, economics and food and drink.
Beat: Rural healthcare in the "Stroke Belt."
Rural communities in central and south Georgia, part of the South’s Stroke Belt, have some of the highest rates of maternal mortality, heart attack, cancer and chronic diseases like diabetes, and an escalating problem with opioid addiction.The region is further challenged by hospital closures, lack of transportation, a declining number of physicians and lack of access to broadband. The rural health reporter investigates causes for the challenges these communities face, and whether proposed solutions are working.