NAO Update
Provided as a NAO member benefit
August 12, 2013

1. From the Executive Director's Desk
Advocacy and Appropriations Update

The House L-HHS Subcommittee markup on the FY 2014 L-HHS Appropriations bill did not materialize. While a new date has not been rescheduled, the effort being made by the subcommittee shows that a markup is imminent. Our efforts to reach out to members in the House need to continue.

Thank you for continuing to inform your Representatives about the importance of FY14 AHEC funding and what AHECs are doing in your state. As you know, Congress is on recess until September 3, 2013.  With Members at home, now is a prime opportunity for you to invite them to attend or participate in events you may be having as a way to showcase your AHEC. 

Also, the NAO Public Policy Leadership Team is very interested in learning about some of the creative advocacy activities that different AHEC Programs and Centers are doing to engage legislators. Please send me some of your more effective ways by the end of next week, and I will highlight them in a Monday Update so as to share best practice and maximize our national effectiveness.

Finally, NAO Board Chair Mary Mitchell and I will be in Washington on Monday, August 19, 2013 meeting with OMB (The Office of Management and Budget) and HRSA to discuss the AHEC Program and funding for FY14 and beyond. We will report on those meetings here.

NAO Social Media

Please be sure to take a look and become a "friend" of the NAO Facebook Page. We have been using the Facebook page much, much more recently as a way of sharing AHEC and NAO activities. The Facebook posts are linked to the NAO home page (, where you can also find my new blog. I am trying to update the blog once a week, and hopefully I'll be able to do it more frequently. Please take a look and make comments in the comment box; I promise to respond!

I recently did a search for "Area Health Education Center" on YouTube. There were a few hundred results listed. I did not look at all of them, though I did see a good amount of videos that highlight various AHEC activities and initiatives. You might consider taking a look and creating your own videos to post. It is a good way to get your word out and I can highlight some here, on the Facebook page, and via the blog. 

Good Resources

I'm not sure if you are aware of this, but the RWJF Daily News Digest is a tremendous resource for information. The digest highlights select articles from major journals, news publications, and blogs regarding health and health care and is a free customizable service of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. I look forward to reading it each day as a way to find out what is happening as it relates to our work. You might enjoy it as well.

The Health Care Marketplaces created by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act are scheduled to open for enrollment October 1, 2013. Unfortunately, fewer than one-fourth of Americans are aware that the marketplaces— formerly known as exchanges— exist, according to a Kaiser Health poll released in June.  Click here for a good brief article about preparing providers to share accurate information with their patients. It's worth a look.

Position Announcement

The Alabama Statewide AHEC Program is pleased to announce an opening for the executive director position for the Southern Alabama AHEC located in Brewton, AL. Please see the position announcement and click here to view the map of the Alabama AHECs.

Have a great week and enjoy the last few weeks of summer!


2. From A-TrACC
A-TrACC Webinar 315T-A. Perf. Measures 2013 - Suggestions for Aligning Data Fields.

Highly recommended for all grantee staff responsible for compiling and inputting data in the HRSA Electronic Handbook.The A-TrACC team will present this webinar to discuss suggestions for aligning data fields in the current A-TrACC Field Guide with the revised 2013 HRSA performance measure reporting tables.

Thursday, August 22, 3 to 4 pm Eastern: Register

Nearly 8,750 Participants and Still Climbing!

As of August 7, reports received show that VMH CE training has reached 8,741 health professionals!! Keep up the fantastic work. Please send your reports to as soon as you complete the follow up evaluation. The goal is in sight!


3. Journal of the National AHEC Organization Seeks Articles
"AHECs: Successfully Adapting to Meet the Nation's Healthcare Needs." It's been 30 years since the Journal of the National AHEC Organization began documenting how AHECs have responded to meet the nation's evolving primary healthcare access needs through education, training, and other healthcare workforce initiatives. In this edition we continue this tradition by highlighting how AHECs are once again responding to changes in the fiscal, education, and healthcare environments.

The Editorial Board is looking for articles that address five important topics:

  1. Interprofessional Education (IPE)
    • How does providing IPE differ from previous educational activities at your AHEC?
    • What challenges have you overcome and do you have a success story to share?
    • How has this affected health professions student training?
  2. The Affordable Care Act
    • What role(s) will your AHEC play in its implementation?
  3. Diversity in the Healthcare Workforce
    • How is the workforce changing in terms of demographics, economics, student loan debt burden, and other ways?
    • How do AHECs encourage more diversity in the healthcare workforce?
  4. Social Entrepreneurship
    • What does social entrepreneurship mean in an AHEC context?
    • What role does a readiness assessment play for your AHEC in determining whether to pursue a social entrepreneurship strategy?
    • What challenges have you overcome and do you have a success story to share?
  5. Social Media
    • What is social media in an AHEC context?
    • How is your AHEC using social media?
    • What is the future for AHEC's use of social media?

Articles on related topics, such as individual and institutional success stories relating to innovative education programs, strategic planning processes with educational partners, and effective evaluation solutions are welcomed.

Please submit drafts, photos, and accompanying materials to

Refer to the NAO website for Journal submission guidelines. Submission Cover Sheet must be included with the article. Deadline: September 15, 2013 (1st Draft Article Submission)

4. Congratulations to Warren Newton, MD, MPH

William L. Roper, MD, MPH, Dean of UNC School of Medicine and CEO of UNC Health Care, has recently announced that Warren Newton will become director of the North Carolina Area Health Education Center (AHEC), effective Sept. 1, 2013. In his new role, Dr. Newton will continue AHEC’s important mission of transforming health care and health education across the state through training for medical students, residents, and other health professionals. As a family physician, teacher and scholar, Dr. Newton has an impressive track record of leadership both statewide and nationally in both care redesign and education, and has founded or led many different statewide initiatives, working closely with various systems, leaders, and professional organizations. As Vice Dean for Education at the UNC School of Medicine, he was actively involved with AHEC and the expansion of opportunities for medical students, residents, and practice support across the state. His previous work with AHEC through the UNC School of Medicine, coupled with his interest and experience in family medicine, make him an ideal choice to advance the presence of AHEC in North Carolina.

As a partnership with UNC, Duke, Wake Forest and ECU, AHEC operates nine centers across the state—each committed to improving the overall health of communities through continuing education programs and information services. With tremendous support from the State of North Carolina, AHECs provide a great value to the state as a whole by training the next generation of health professionals and providing greater access to high quality care, regardless of the ability to pay. And, thanks to previous leadership from Dr. Thomas Bacon, AHEC is a leader in health care innovation across the country. We wish Dr. Bacon the best and hope he has a wonderful retirement.

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 |

To submit an item, please click here. Deadline: Thursdays, noon CST.

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