NAO Update
Provided as a NAO member benefit
April 29, 2013

1. From the Executive Director's Desk

Advocacy and Washington, D.C. Update
Below is a broad summary of what has recently occurred regarding the Federal budgeting process and our on-going advocacy efforts (with thanks to HMCW)

A.      FY14 and budget

  • The President's FY 2014 Budget proposal included ZERO funding for the AHEC program; however, as you know, it is not the force of law and is a suggestive document that will begin the process towards crafting the FY 14 appropriations bills.
  • Congress is currently working on the FY14 Budget with Senate LHHS and House LHHS subcommittees holding several hearings to discuss the budget proposal. Once we know the best timing for advocacy we will let you know. I'll also be on the Hill in the coming weeks to meet with LHHS Sub-committee members to discuss AHEC Funding for FY14.
  • The NAO Public Policy Leadership team will be monitoring these hearings and will also plan to submit questions to key committee members, especially those supportive of AHEC, concerning the funding level and support for AHEC as a program highly aligned with HHS and HRSA objectives.

B.      Grassroots Advocacy Efforts

  • Due to the fact that AHEC did not receive funding in the President's budget again, grassroots advocacy efforts are especially important.
  • As you know, Action Alerts have been sent out (one to state advocacy leaders to follow up with the offices that attended the NAO briefing AND another to NAO membership to reach out to Senate offices to sign the Senator Reed (RI) "Dear Colleague" letter asking for $280 million for HRSA Title VII programs and specifically including AHEC in the letter.
  • One novel and hopefully effective way to advocate is to send a note to Senator Mark Pryor of Arkansas, who recently asked Secretary Sebelius at the 4/24/13 Senate Appropriations Committee hearing as to why the AHEC program was not included in the President's Budget Proposal for FY14. He said "AHEC works in Arkansas. Why doesn't the budget proposal include funding for AHEC?" The secretary responded that she was not familiar with the program, and would provide a response for the record. One way to build on this is that we can try to get every state with an AHEC to do the same. Just e-mail his health aide Tate Heuer (, simply saying : "Thanks Senator Pryor; AHEC works in ____, too !" Be sure to cc your State's Senators or their Health Legislative Aides as well.

C.      Update on Senator Reed's "Dear Colleague" Letter

  • The deadline to get Senate offices to sign onto the letter was April 26, 2013 by close of business.
  • Sign-ons as of April 25, 2013 were:




Boxer, Barbara



Brown, Sherrod



Casey, Robert



Durbin, Richard



Franken, Al



Gillibrand, Kirsten



Heinrich, Martin



Johnson, Tim



Leahy, Patrick



Levin, Carl



Menendez, Robert



Rockefeller, John


W. Va.

Sanders, Bernie



Schumer, Charles



Shaheen, Jeanne



Stabenow, Debbie



Tester, Jon



Whitehouse, Sheldon



D.      HRSA Advisory Committee on Interdisciplinary Community-Based Linkages

  • There was a meeting April 22-23, 2013 discussing interdisciplinary community-based linkages and opportunities with the Department of Veterans Affairs.
  • Discussion focused on Veteran Community Partnerships initiative, which has a goal to foster partnership between community organizations, federal agencies, and community health providers to provide access to healthcare and seamless transition to veterans.
  • Discussion also centered on the 13th annual report from HRSA to Senate HELP and LHHS committees, the Secretary of HHS, and HRSA leadership. The Advisory Committee will send out a link that HMCW will distribute to the NAO Public Policy group.

REMS FDA CME Funding Opportunity
Through the Collaboration for REMs Education (CO*RE), a 10-partner collaboration that includes primary care, addiction medicine, and pain and hospice-palliative care specialty perspectives, NAO will be offering AHECs an opportunity to educate all prescribers within their area on the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Extended Release/Long Acting (ER/LA) Opioids. CO*RE has designed a comprehensive and integrated educational program utilizing the most sophisticated principles of adult learning, technology and outcomes measurement to provide the REMS education module. The goal is to conduct a CME training in each of the states with AHECs, including those without Federally recognized AHEC Programs. There will be 54 total awards made, each with an award of $2,500. Sign-ups for the CME will begin in early May. Stay tuned for more details!

Have a great week!

2. From A-TrACC
Webinar 312T-A: Data Analysis & Report Development for AHEC Center Staff
Data analysis does not have to be scary or complicated. Learn how to use data to tell your Center's story.
Presenters Shannon Carlin-Menter, PhD, Director of Evaluation, New York State AHEC System, and Greta Lax, MS, Center Director, Akron-Region Interprofessional AHEC, will help you learn how to use collected data and how to explore that data in the context of questions that need to be answered. Center-level data analysis should establish the outcomes or value of the program/s you provide, tell your story to stakeholders, and inform program improvement. Register

AHEC Network Veterans Mental Health Training Schedule
Click here to see the full schedule of upcoming Veterans Mental Health CE programs. How exciting! All participating AHECs that have not yet offered a training should be listed here. If your AHEC is not listed, please contact A-TrACC ASAP ( This schedule is being shared nationally with the American Association of Medical Colleges, the National Board of Certified Counselors, the Bureau of Primary Health Care, Army OneSource, and other organizations interested in promoting and supporting these trainings.

AHECs and Health Centers Webinar
This recorded webinar is a "must see" for all AHEC staff. It explains how community-oriented primary care works and how AHECs and health centers can work together, not just within the context of the AHEC Veterans Mental Health Project, but also through other collaborations. Click here to watch the recording and e-mail to get the slides and handouts.

3. Healthy Aging Webinar May 16, 2013; 2:00-3:30pm MT
What is longevity without health? Adults today are looking not only to extend their lives, but to enjoy their extra years. By 2030, the proportion of the U.S. population aged 65 and older will double to about 71 million older adults, or one in every five Americans. The far-reaching implications of the rising number of older Americans and their growing diversity will include unprecedented demands on public health, aging services, and the nation's healthcare system. This webinar will showcase several evidence-based and model programs focused on the physical, mental and spiritual health of older adults that are replicable in other States and communities. Click here for details.

4. Funding and Sustaining Telehealth Networks in Idaho Webinar May 8, 2013; 12:00 1:00 pm MT
Sign up now by clicking here. Deadline for registration is Monday, May 6, 2013; noon MT. Lynda Bennett, center director for Idaho AHEC, facilitates the Idaho Telehealth Discussion Group convened by Representative John Rusche. This group is currently involved in identifying resources and addressing barriers to increase access to healthcare throughout Idaho through the use of telemedicine. She is also partnering with LinkIDAHO to present a webinar on how to fund and sustain telehealth networks, which will take place May 8. While this webinar is being designed to be somewhat specific to Idaho, they will be discussing FCC funding that is available to all states and some of the basic tools for assessing readiness and next steps for implementing or growing a telehealth network would certainly apply to others. All are welcome to attend this free webinar.

Mission Statement: The National AHEC Organization supports and advances the AHEC Network to improve health by leading the nation in the recruitment, training and retention of a diverse health workforce for underserved communities.

©National AHEC Organization | 7044 S. 13th Street, Oak Creek, WI 53154 | 414-908-4953 x131|
Executive Director Rob Trachtenberg | 414-908-4953 |

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