NAO UPDATE | Provided as a Member Benefit February 29, 2016

From the CEO's Office

Our NAO HPV Team reverse site visit to the CDC in Atlanta was highly successful! Meeting with our CDC project officers and the other HPV awardee associations was tremendously productive as we began to lay the groundwork for years 3-5 of the project. While we will still primarily focus on provider education, we will begin to work much more closely with each of the other awardees in partnership on the national and local and community level. How we do that will be a challenge, though one that I know we will meet. It was ​heartening to hear Dr. Melinda Wharton, Director of the Immunization Services Division at CDC, discuss a recent visit she made to Alabama to address local immunization issues and at the table was the local AHEC, the ​AAP, the local comprehensive cancer coalition and other organizations all working to solve the immunization rate issue. Coordination and an agency collaborative​ approach will be the "way forward" in addressing immunization rates as our HPV project progresses, especially in states that have lower than optimal rates.

Along with a successful reverse site visit, the NAO HPV team and I were fortunate to attend a portion of the tri-annual meeting of the ACIP where the HPV vaccination was being discussed for a portion of the meeting. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is a group of medical and public health experts that develops recommendations on how to use vaccines to control diseases in the United States. The recommendations stand as public health advice that will lead to a reduction in the incidence of vaccine preventable diseases and an increase in the safe use of vaccines and related biological products.​ It was a treat to attend such a fascinating meeting and I look forward to attending again.

Countdown to the Capitol!

The "Countdown to the Capitol" page is now live on the NAO website (​, where a great deal of information is available regarding the 2016 NAO Washington, D.C. conference and ​the webinar series to prep AHECers for our "Day on the Hill" on June 29, 2016, including archived webinars, the advocacy toolkit and state data one-pagers.

As you recall, the National AHEC Organization's Countdown to the Capitol webinar series is designed to prepare our entire NAO membership to join together as one strong voice on Capitol Hill during the 2016 NAO Conference; AHEC on the Hill: A Capitol Idea. The 2016 NAO Conference will be held June 27th-30th, 2016 at the Renaissance Washington, D.C. Downtown Hotel.​

Please be sure to take a look at the page and be sure to register for the March 11, 2016 webinar. Registration information for our final webinar on May 13th will be available soon.

FY2017 Funding Updates

From our colleagues at "NDD United" (Non-Defense Discretionary), who recently hosted a town-hall meeting in Washington to discuss FY2017 and beyond. Takeaways from the town hall:

  1. The funding level for FY17 is flat compared to FY16. The Bipartisan Budget Act raised the caps for FY 16 and 17 above the sequestration levels but only enough to ensure that 17 was not a cut from 16. To make matter worse, the flat funding is BEFORE inflation. Therefore it is more like a small cut and will make appropriations even more difficult this year.

  2. The first big battle will be over the 302b allocations. This is the funding level that the full Appropriations Committee in each chamber hands down to the Subcommittees for all of the programs under their jurisdiction. Last time around, the increase in funding in the Bipartisan Budget Act was not distributed proportionately across these allocations. In fact, some bills saw increases that were more than double the average while others received less than half of the average increase. Because there will be pressure once again on leadership to increase funding for the more popular spending bills, some other 302b allocations are at risk of being cut from last year.

  3. This is not going to be over any time soon.With Supreme Court nominations, a Presidential Election, and general dysfunction in Congress, it is VERY likely that we will end up with at least a short term CR that keeps the government running until late November, early December when the election is over. At that point, Congressional leadership will consider the outcome of the election and determine next steps. If a Republican wins the White House, it is likely that there will be another CR until March to allow for the next Administration to make the final funding decisions.

  4. The fight for FY18 will be fast and furious. With the BBA of 2015 expiring, there will be a cut in NDD funding of about $15 billion in FY18 unless Congress does something to replace sequestration. With a new administration and new Congress, the fight for FY18 will come fast with the condensed budget process largely as the result of new administration starting in January. Therefore, we need to start talking about the return of sequester in FY18 NOW. NDD United will work on a Sequester 101 one pager to help groups communicate this threat to their constituents.

  5. Sequestration is scary but a Balanced Budget Amendment is far worse. There is a movement in the states to call for a Constitutional Convention to institute a Balanced Budget Amendment. This would decimate NDD programs. CBPP is helping to coordinate efforts in the states that are the biggest threat. To learn more and to get involved, contact Alex Rugoff at

Here are David Reich's fabulous slides containing an assortment of graphs that are helpful in discussing the issues outlined above.

FMA Health Webinar with Dr. Fitzhugh Mullan is available online

I recently virtually attended a FMA health webinar with Dr. Mullan and thought you might like to take a look as it relates to Workforce Diversity and the Social Accountability of Medical Schools.​

To watch the webinar, please click here. (;

If you would like to become engaged with Family Medicine for America's Health and the strategic work that the Core Teams are engaging in, we ask that you take 15 minutes to fill out the engagement questionnaire. (

To stay up to date on the latest news with FMAHealth and each of the six Core Teams, please visit the FMAHealth website. (

And Finally… "The Cost Conversation"

A friend of mine (a 2nd year psychiatry resident at Brown) and his business partner recently created a free App that helps patients and providers have a conversation regarding the cost of personal health care procedures. I'd love for some of you to take a look at this ​and give me your thoughts, particularly as it relates to the potential to address social justice issues and the underserved populations and communities we serve.

Take a look at the short video and you may cinsider downloading the App and giving it a try:

Tuesdays with Trachtenberg

A Tool for Connecting with Colleagues AND catching up on all things NAO

The next "Tuesdays with Trachtenberg" call will be Tuesday, March 1st from 12:30--1:30 pm EST. On our most recent call we primarily discussed President Obama's FY2017 budget proposal and AHEC funding, as well the need for consistent, meaningful data that can highlight the effectiveness of our AHEC network. Please dial in for our next call at:1-605-475-3220: Passcode: 245171#​. Join us and see where the conversation goes!​

NAO Special Interest Groups

The  SIGs continue to roll along! Please take a look at the spreadsheet and consider joining a SIG that aligns with your interest areas and your AHECs' strategic priorities.​

Remember once again: ​You DO NOT need to be an expert in your area or areas of interest; the only requirement is that you organize the group using the free conference call number we've provided for you. Go forth and engage with your colleagues! I'd love to hear how some of the meetings have gone and what the plans going forward are.​ 

For those groups that are making good progress, please consider meeting at the NAO 2016 conference in DC. It will be a good way to connect ini-person to keep the work alive!​

Here's the link to the growing spreadsheet; and remember, you can edit and add areas of interest:

Good Reads!

NAO Member Profile Update Information

Attention NAO Members,

Now is the perfect time to take a moment and update your member profile for NAO to make sure we have the most current information not only about you, but about each center and program office.  To update your profile, please go to, log in using your member user id and password and update your profile. If you forgot your user id and password, simply click on the blue box that says "I forgot my User ID and Password", and follow the instructions. 

If you are AHEC staff and do not currently receive information from the NAO organization, and you are interested in doing so, please have your AHEC manager go to, click on the membership tab at the top and then click on member profile update, log in and update their profile and add your name and e-mail address. To search for the manager at your AHEC that can add login accounts,  click here. Once they have done this, you will receive your own user id and password which will allow login access to the members only section of the NAO website, receive our weekly Monday Update Newsletter, be able to register for any NAO conferences at the member rate and more. 

In the event that you or your AHEC manager have difficulty performing any of these functions noted above, or if you are having trouble logging in, please contact our Customer Care department at , or (414) 908-4953 x450.

Thank you for helping us out and updating this important information.

Best Regards,

NAO Membership Committee

National Training Center

CDC reverse site visit
The HPV leadership team traveled to Atlanta last week to participate in a CDC reverse site visit. The team touted the success of the project thus far as CDC looks to AHEC for impact with those providers serving rural and underserved populations, as well as participated in partnership meetings with the other HPV project grantees. It's already become apparent that AHECs have established new and strengthened existing partnerships that will impact their work well beyond HPV.  Melinda Wharton, MD, MPH,  Director, Immunization Services Division, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease; Nikki Hayes, MPH, Branch Chief, Comprehensive Cancer Control Branch; Shannon Stokley, MPH, Associate Director for Science, Immunization Services Disision and the HPV project officers from CDC also gave helpful insight into what the remaining years of the 5-year project with CDC may look like and the team will be providing more information in the coming weeks.

President's Cancer Panel
The President's Cancer Panel recently released a report calling for a coordinated effort to increase HPV vaccination rates. Get the summary here.

"What People Are Saying"

If you've been tempted to watch the free Intro to Health Information Resources for Teens webinar that we've advertised the last couple of weeks, but haven't yet gotten around to it, perhaps this post will prompt you to click "play". Here are some of the things people are saying about the webinar. Please remember to take the ten question participation survey after you watch!

  • The top 5 sources of health information were important to know so that we can target those areas to make sure that the information is accurate. In developing our approach, we want to reach the youth but also correct any possible inaccurate information that they will receive from the parents or internet (for example).
  • The explanation of MedlinePlus was a super bonus. We will be using this resource as the foundation for our "health information scavenger hunt."
  • The NLM websites were particularly interesting. I have an environmental health background and I found the NLM website for middle school students AMAZING!
  • American Indian Health Portal as an additional trusted site for health information, and utilization (of it) for various lesson plans.
  • I believe GeneEd would be an interest to students, and may be utilized in family history lesson plans
  • The thing that was most beneficial for our project was the demonstration of the use of Medline. I myself was not familiar with it and expected it to be less user-friendly than it is.
  • Overall I thought the webinar was really informative, I watched it a couple times to make sure I saw/heard all the information.
  • I thought the webinar was excellent.
  • There was one web site that I was not aware of – you can look up health careers in real time for your local area and check out salaries and other pertinent data.

Available Now - "An Intro to Health Information Resources for Teens"

This 1-hour, archived webinar is available at no cost to anyone with an interest in teen health information literacy. After participating you will be able to:

  1. Define health information literacy
  2. Describe the role of the NLM and the NN/LM within a health information context
  3. List teen appropriate health information resources from the NLM and other organizations to use in your programming
  4. Identify at least 2 health information careers and resources about health–related professions

Access the webinar and the participation survey here:

2016 Conference Information

NAO 2016 On-line Conference Agenda Now Available!

We are excited to release a preview of the on-line agenda. This agenda will automatically update so you can view the most recent agenda as you plan your week. You will be able to see information on our keynote speakers, our multitude of exciting sessions, and find out information about the activities we have planned for you.

Even more exciting is the ability to create an account on our on-line agenda site, which will allow you to network with other conference attendees, and to even create your own personal agenda to follow throughout your week at the conference.

To VIEW a "simple" version of the schedule of events, CLICK HERE.

To VIEW the "expanded" version of the schedule of events, CLICK HERE.

To PRINT a "simple" version of the schedule of events, CLICK HERE.

To PRINT the "expanded" version of the schedule of events, CLICK HERE.

National AHEC Organization
2016 Biennial Conference Award Nominations

An Invitation to the AHEC Community
To Recognize Our Most Outstanding Projects and Individuals

The NAO Awards Committee is now accepting nominations for the NAO Awards for Excellence, which will be presented at the 2016 National AHEC Conference in Washington, DC.

At each of the biennial national conferences, the National AHEC Organization recognizes projects and individuals that epitomize the AHEC spirit of excellence in the following categories:

AHEC Center Awards for Excellence (Continuing Education, Educational Resources, Health Careers Student Recruitment, Research or Evaluation Tools, Health Professions Student Training, and Special Community-Based Program) An AHEC center can nominate itself for a Center Award for Excellence.

  • Eugene S. Mayer Program of Excellence Award
  • Red Koelling Distinguished Service Award
  • Andy Nichols Award for Social Justice

We encourage you to visit the NAO website ( and click on the link to the nomination forms for each individual award categories to review the criteria and instructions for nominating candidates. Only NAO members are eligible for awards. No individual or organization may receive more than one award.

The deadline for nominations is March 4, 2016.

For further information about the 2016 NAO AHEC Awards, please contact any of the Awards Committee leadership team members:

Mary Mitchell
Manhattan-Staten Island AHEC

Bob Alpino
Eastern Virginia AHEC

Marty Schaller
Northeastern WI AHEC

Save the Dates!

The National AHEC Organization’s Countdown to the Capitol webinar series is designed to prepare the entire NAO membership to join together as one strong voice on Capitol Hill during the 2016 NAO Conference; AHEC on the Hill: A Capitol Idea. The 2016 NAO Conference will be held June 27th- 30th, 2016 at the Renaissance Washington, D.C. Downtown Hotel.

NAO is planning activities throughout the coming months to support the membership as you prepare to visit Washington, D.C. and tell your important story to your elected officials.

Please save the dates for the upcoming Countdown to the Capitol webinar series.

Friday, March 11, 2016          12:30 PM – 1:30 PM Eastern Time  Register HERE

Friday, May 13, 2016              12:30 PM – 1:30 PM Eastern Time  

More information on each webinar will be shared in the near future. The content for each topic in the series is designed to meet the membership needs and is based on results from NAO advocacy survey. Each webinar will present a different Advocacy topic and will build upon the previous webinar. This interactive robust webinar series will share proven strategies, provide tools, allow for dialog and time for questions.

The Countdown to the Capitol is brought to you by your NAO leadership, the NAO Conference Planning Committee and its Advocacy Subcommittee,  Health and Medicine Counsel of Washington, NAO Public Policy Committee and through the coordination and efforts of many, many others within NAO.

Stay tuned for more details and registration information and welcome aboard as we Countdown to the Capitol!

For more information, please contact your NAO Public Policy Co-Chairs:

Angela M. Boyer (Indiana AHEC Network)

Kristina Fjeld-Sparks (New Hampshire AHEC)


Check out this amazing slate of keynote speakers for the 2016 Conference.

  • Patti Dobrowolski – a visual goal setter – will kick off the conference by boosting our organizational genius. Patti captivates and inspires audiences, helping them tap into their innate creativity to identify compelling visions and craft bold plans. This TEDx speaker, critically acclaimed comic performer, writer and business consultant will provide an innovative visual keynote guaranteed to inspire employee and leadership creativity.

  • Dr. Damon Tweedy, author of the New York Times bestseller Black Man in a White Coat, will share with us his frontline look at race and medicine. This passionate and profound memoir grapples with race, bias, and the unique health problems of black Americans. It was one of TIME Magazine's Top 10 Nonfiction Books of 2015, and USA Today described it as "A timely, thought-provoking examination of our heartbreaking health care system." Dr. Tweedy is a graduate of Duke Medical School and Yale Law School. He is assistant professor of psychiatry at Duke University Medical Center and staff physician at the Durham VA Medical Center.

  • Dr. Jonathan Oberlander, a national health policy expert from UNC Chapel Hill, will wrap up the conference by sharing his perspectives on health care politics and policy and health care reform. His work explores ongoing political fights over and implementation of the Affordable Care Act, health care cost control, Medicare reform, and the fate of CHIP. He has been featured in articles and interviews in the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, National Public Radio, the BBC, CBS News and PBS.

Look for registration information and highlights on additional speakers soon.


Traumatic Brain Injury Webinar

Management of Sleep Disturbances Following Concussion

March 10, 2016; 1-2:30 p.m. (ET)

Nearly 340,000 service members sustained a traumatic brain injury (TBI) between 2000 and 2015 with 82.5 percent of these classified as mild TBI, also known as concussion (Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center, 2016). Mathias & Alvaro (2012) showed that as many as 50 percent of people who sustained a concussion suffered from a sleep disturbance. Additionally, in a 2008 Department of Defense survey of Operation Iraqi Freedom service members, 92.9 percent of those surveyed with a TBI history endorsed fatigue (Hoge et al., 2008). Sleep disturbances and fatigue can lead to worsening symptoms such as decreased cognition, pain, irritability and ultimately affect return to work.

Clinically, sleep problems may co-exist with headache, somatic pain, and other neurological symptoms, and diagnosis and treatment can be challenging for providers. This presentation will address the assessment and management of concussion-associated sleep disturbances and fatigue. The speakers will present recent research and discuss ways to enhance quality of life and function in individuals who are experiencing post-concussion sleep dysfunction and fatigue.

At the conclusion of this webinar, participants will be able to:

  • Describe common sleep disturbances following TBI
  • Discuss appropriate diagnostic strategies for sleep disorders
  • Demonstrate knowledge of fatigue management following TBI
  • Articulate pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatment of sleep disturbances and fatigue
  • Relate new advances in treatment of sleep disorders

Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center. (2016). DoD Numbers for Traumatic Brain Injury
Worldwide - Totals. Retrieved from

Hoge, C. W., McGurk, D., Thomas, J. L., Cox, A. L., Engel, C. C., & Castro, C. A.. (2008). Mild Traumatic Brain Injury in U.S. Soldiers Returning from Iraq. New England Journal of Medicine, 358(5), 453-463.

Mathias, J. L. & Alvaro, P. K. (2012). Prevalence of sleep disturbances, disorders, and problems following traumatic brain injury: A meta-analysis. Sleep Medicine, 13(7), 898-905.

Emerson M. Wickwire, Ph.D.
Director of the Insomnia Program
Assistant Professor, Departments of Psychiatry and Medicine
University of Maryland School of Medicine
Baltimore, Maryland

Michael R. Yochelson, M.D., MBA
Vice President of Medical Affairs and Chief Medical Officer
MedStar National Rehabilitation Network
Washington, District of Columbia

Panakkal David, M.D.
Traumatic Brain Injury Subject Matter Expert
Division of Clinical Affairs
Contract support to the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center
Silver Spring, Maryland

Continuing Education
Continuing education credit is available from Professional Education Services Group (PESG). You must register by 3 p.m. (ET) March 10, 2016, to qualify for the receipt of continuing education credit.

The awarding of continuing education credit is limited in scope to health care providers who actively provide psychological health and traumatic brain injury care to U.S. active-duty service members, reservists, National Guardsmen, military veterans and their families.

Sign up for the webinar at Please note registration is required for each webinar regardless if the participant has an existing PESG account.

Upon completion of registration, a confirmation email will be sent providing webinar event details.

Once registered, you may use Adobe Connect or Defense Collaboration Services to attend the webinar.

If you have questions or need assistance, please email the DCoE webinar team at

Other News

Rural Health & Agriculture CE Series

Special rural populations that include farmers, fishermen, foresters and their families have unique environmental healthcare needs. The NC AHEC, in collaboration with the NC Agromedicine Institute, Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health, and the North Carolina Tobacco Trust Fund is offering a blended-learning continuing education series for healthcare professionals focused on rural population health.

2016 Agricultural Medicine: Keeping Rural America Healthy & Safe - Occupational & Environmental Medicine for Healthcare Providers
A 3-month series of both face-to-face workshops and informative webinars will provide improved knowledge of the cultural impact of the agriculture workforce, along with specific information about the risks and illnesses associated with living and working in rural communities.

Available sessions include:
Two separate sets of workshops: March 18 & 19 and May 20 & 21
Six Webinars: April 1, 8, 15, 22, 29, and May 6

Participants may earn up to 41 contact hours, 4.1 CEU, and 41.5 CNE contact hours are available.
See brochure for more details.

For questions, contact Dawn Morriston, MPH, Director of Student Services, Public Health & Special Projects

Eastern AHEC at 252.744.5214 or

National Public Health Week

Thank you for participating in the National Public Health Week Partnership webinar. If you missed the webinar or would like to share it with others, recordings are available online.

The NPHW website is now live!
The NPHW 2016 website contains many great resources, including: the eight facts for the week, downloadable logos and wallpaper, an infographic and more. The NPHW Toolkit can help you plan your events and rally to make the U.S. the healthiest nation by 2030. Become an NPHW partner and join Generation Public Health, APHA's movement to create the healthiest nation in one generation.

We encourage you to submit your NPHW events to allow your community, and communities throughout the nation, to see what you'll be doing for NPHW. Make sure to check out the map of events to see what's going on in your community!

Social media webinar for NPHW
APHA's social media team will be hosting a Google Hangout on March 9 at 2 P.M. EST. Our experts will discuss simple ways to get involved with NPHW through social media, including how to sign up for the annual NPHW Twitter chat and how we can help build a public health movement together. Visit the NPHW website to learn more and register.

Follow NPHW on Social Media!
For more information and up-to date announcements, follow @NPHW on Twitter and like APHA's Facebook page. Don't forget to RSVP for the NPHW Twitter Chat on April 6 at 2 P.M. EDT.

Questions? Suggestions?Email us.

Job Opportunities

Please remember to check out the Employment section of the NAO website for current job listings.

Current Openings are for:

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Email Contact: Robert M. Trachtenberg, MS

National AHEC Organization
7044 S. 13th St.
Oak Creek, WI 53154