Defining Frontier

Frontier areas are the most remote and geographically isolated areas in the United States. These areas are usually sparsely populated and face extreme distances and travel time to services of any kind.

Although these general characteristics of Frontier are widely accepted, different organizations use different criteria to determine eligibility for their specific programmatic purposes. To determine if you are in the frontier, click here.

NCFC uses low density and remoteness as the starting point and works with local agencies, such as the State Offices of Rural Health, to identify specific frontier areas in each state.  We believe that local agencies and communities best understand their unique, local conditions. Working with local agencies to identify frontier areas acknowledges the diversity among frontier communities.