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

1. From the Executive Director's Mobile Office
I'll be on the road this week in Washington meeting with partner organizations, as well as attending a briefing sponsored by Health Affairs Founding Editor John Iglehart on Thursday, November 14, at the W Hotel in Washington, D.C., that will focus on the health care workforce. The program will include a keynote address by Princeton Professor Uwe Reinhardt and remarks by Representatives Allyson Schwartz (D-PA), and Aaron Schock (R-IL).

Next week I'll be in Washington again for the quarterly A-TrACC Advisory Committee meeting, a few Hill visits, and, of course, our NAO Board strategic planning meeting. I cannot overstate how important this strategic planning meeting is. We will assess the current NAO strategic plan, chart a course for the future amidst a highly dynamic external environment (think "skate to where the puck is going"), as well as review NAO's governance and committee processes and structure. I'm ready to roll up my sleeves and get to work in strengthening NAO and the AHEC Program internally and externally. We will have excellent board and committee member participation and I am certain this will be a very successful meeting. Once this meeting is wrapped up, we'll send out a summary to you all.

CNE Accreditation Assistance Needed
The Overseas School Nurses Association chapter of the National Association of School Nurses is seeking an approver of continuing nurse education for their annual conferences (usually held overseas). The nurses planning the conference are licensed in the U.S. and working in Department of Defense Schools. For more info, contact Donna Mazyck, National Association of School Nurses, 1-866-627-6767, 301-585-1791 (fax),

Legislative/Appropriations Update
Congress achieved a resolution to extend the debt ceiling to February 7, 2014 and keep the government funded until January 15, 2014. Congress is moving in a forward direction which will fund the government for a few more months.

The Budget Control Committee will be issuing recommendations for moving forward for FY14 and sequestration. A Budget Committee Conference will take place around December 13 where there will be an effort to reconcile differences between the House and Senate Appropriations budgets. The House and Senate are currently discussing options such as limitations and caps for appropriations bills that were already passed, including a revised Senate L-HHS bill or a House L-HHS bill. There are many outcomes that could occur. We will continue to monitor progress and make an impact/make the AHEC voice heard.

Will there be any more shutdowns?
The Speaker of the House and Senate Minority Leader say no more shutdowns. However, both the House and Senate will need to negotiate in terms of their budget number and then draft up all appropriations bills prior to the 15th of January. This means they will need to work over the holidays.

What about Sequestration?
Both Republicans and Democrats believe sequestration is bad. There is interest in cancelling/opposing sequestration from both sides. If sequestration is done away with, there may be some relief on non-defense domestic discretionary spending, which means there will be possible relief on the AHEC program (potential increase in funding). We'll keep a close eye on this.

We will continue to increase awareness on the Hill to continue relaying AHEC's importance and message. NAO will monitor any action in Washington and keep you all informed over the coming weeks, and we will distribute action alerts when timing is suitable. Additionally, NAO will continue to sign on to letters that support non-defense discretionary spending for programs like ours. Please stay tuned, and as usual, please let me know if you have any questions or comments.

New Leadership at HRSA in the Bureau of Health Professions
Please join me in welcoming and congratulating Ms. Rebecca Spitzgo, the new Associate Administrator for the Bureau of Health Professions (previously at the Bureau of Clinician Recruitment Services), and who has replaced Dr. Jan Heinrich, who has moved to CMS. Additionally, there is new leadership in the Bureau of Health Professions, Diversity Center. Please join me in welcoming Ms. Tia Leaks. I look forward to our continued work with HRSA Leadership.

Have a great week!

2. From A-TrACC
A New Tool for AHEC Centers. Session B, Continuing Education Spreadsheets, is this Thursday, Nov. 14.
A-TrACC has developed Excel spreadsheets that center staff can use to organize and aggregate data collected with the A-TrACC Field Guide forms. Participants will learn how to use the spreadsheets for their own reporting and evaluation needs and how to organize the data required for HRSA biannual reporting. The spreadsheets will be presented in three sessions. Center program coordinators should register for the session most relevant to their AHEC work.

A-TrACC Webinar 401T-A,B,C: Field Guide Spreadsheets

  • Session B: CE/PES Field Guide Spreadsheets for CE Coordinators

Thursday, Nov. 14, 3 to 4 pm Eastern: Register

  • Session C: HCPP Field Guide Spreadsheets for HCPP Coordinators

Tuesday, Dec. 3, 3 to 4 pm Eastern: Register

Marketplace Project Kick-off. Health Professionals & the Health Insurance Marketplace

Join the A-TrACC team and our HRSA Project Officer Kyle Peplinski for the kick-off of a new nationwide AHEC CE and outreach effort to educate health professionals and staff about the Health Insurance Marketplace and related recruitment and enrollment processes. Learn what it's all about and how your AHEC can participate.

Marketplace Webinar 402T-A. Project Kick-off. Health Professionals & the Health Insurance Marketplace. Monday, Nov. 18, 3-4 pm Eastern: Register

3. NAO Data Collection: Data Needed
It's NAO data collection time! While HRSA has been busy revamping our federal data reporting requirements, CORE has been working to determine exactly what data we need to collect to tell the AHEC story ourselves. Most items in the data request will be the same or similar to what you have seen in previous years, but a few things are new. We know that some of you may not be able to provide everything. All we ask is that you fill in as much of the request as you can and look at ways you can potentially collect this data in the future.

This year we will not be collecting usual CORE Excel file or copies of your BHPr report. Instead, we have created a web-based data collection tool ( that you can use to directly input your state's data. In order to use the site, you will first need a password. Please send an e-mail with: 1) whatever password you would like to use; 2) your name; and 3) your AHEC's name to CORE Co-Chair, Steve Boulanger, at so he can grant you access as soon as possible.

Once collected, this data will be used in the aggregate for the NAO Annual Report, requests from policy makers, and requests from our NAO leadership. As always, thanks for your help in making this successful.

4. NAO Finance Committee Seeks New Members
The NAO Finance Committee is looking for a couple of number-oriented new members. This committee meets monthly by conference, fourth Thursday of the month, 4:30-5:30 Eastern. The monthly call reviews the financial statements, oversees the annual audit, reviews and finalizes fiscal-related policies and procedures, and is considering an investment policy. For more information, please contact Linda Cragin, NAO Treasurer, at

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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