NAO UPDATE | Provided as a Member Benefit July 18, 2016

From the CEO's Office

Thank you to those who have shared their NAO 2016 conference experiences over the past two weeks. Overwhelmingly, the feedback has been extremely positive, with comments ranging from "I heard great things about the NAO conference last month. My colleagues who went to the "Hill" had a great time and one of them told me that the content of the conference was the best she's been to out of the 3 NAO conferences she has attended. Kudos to the planning committee!" to "this year's conference inspired me to want to do more, to be involved, to participate, and/or volunteer at a National level." I heard many more comments in a similar vein regarding the quality of the keynote speakers, the excellent concurrent sessions, the tight coordination of preparing and moving AHECers to the rally and to the Hill and also regarding the selection of healthy food choices! It's wonderful to hear such positive feedback and this certainly sets the bar high for the NAO 2018 conference — for which discussions are already beginning.​

All the conference presentations should be up on the Google Drive for your review and use (of those that provided presenter permission)​. Please take a look and use liberally!

HRSA AHEC Re-Design Team & Workgroup for AHEC FY2017 FOA

The work to develop a comprehensive webinar series continues, as Sandra Pope (WV AHEC), chair of the Program Director's Constituency Group, Paula Overfelt (NW MO AHEC), chair of the Center Director's Constituency Group, Gretchen Forsell and I spoke frequently this past week to develop a process to provide a webinar series — much like the "Countdown to the Capitol" series — that will help all AHECs address the ​components of the HRSA AHEC FY2017 FOA.​ The NAO executive committee reviewed and supports this process.

Our discussions last week focused further on providing to the membership a specific overview of the process to date (likely on August 8th-we will send out a blast once dates are confirmed) and then a webinar series where AHEC experts in each of the three AHEC focus areas — Distribution of Health Professionals; Diversity of Health Professionals; Practice Transformation — would ​share their expertise and provide suggestions regarding defining common terms, sharing standardized measurement tools and targeting common aims as part of the application process prior to the anticipated January 2017 FOA release date.

As the timeline gets finalized we will get this out to you all ASAP. In the meantime, again, if you haven't yet reviewed these (please do), you can see the June 30, 2016 HRSA presentation slides here. You can also see the NAO redesign proposal of May 6, 2016 to HRSA here and a summary of our call on June 22, 2016 with HRSA to discuss their response here. Stay tuned for further details as they evolve.​


The House Appropriations Committee finished its FY2017 markup and AHEC appears to have stayed in their version of the HHS budget at level funding of $30.25 million.

​​Apparently, the Appropriations Committee reports seem to have more substance relevant to the AHEC than in the past. In addition to the specific language on AHEC in the House report, this piece was included as well: "the Committee does not include the requested bill language allowing the (HRSA) Administrator to transfer three percent or less of funds between any of the HRSA accounts." This hearkens back to the experience of a few years back when we lost some AHEC dollars to a HRSA transfer. We believe the Senate committee report has similar language.​ Please stay tuned for more specific information regarding the final report language and thank you to Michael French for his research and analysis.

Good Reads!

National Training Center

How does your state stack up when it comes to HPV?

Do you know the HPV vaccination rates in your state? You can get state-specific data on HPV vaccination rates and missed opportunities, prevalence of provider recommendations, new cases per year of cervical cancer and new cases per year of oropharyngeal cancer all in your state one-page profile sheet. Fabulous resource to use at stakeholder meetings, continuing education events and other presentations! You can download your state's profile sheet at the HPV webpage under State Profile Sheets tab.

Include social media in your HPV materials dissemination strategy

A 2012 study by the Journal of Medical Internet Research indicated 70 percent of physicians reported using social media on "at least a monthly basis." With that in mind, using your social media channels to distribute HPV information may be a good idea! Check out the HPV Social Media Toolkit for example posts and tweets and best practices for using Twitter and Facebook to reach healthcare providers.

Upcoming IIS training

George Washington Cancer Institute will be presenting a training on Immunization Information Systems (IIS) at 1 p.m. ET, Monday, Aug. 22 for all interested AHECs. Registration link will be coming soon!


Sustainable project outcomes from the NAO Health Information Literacy project reach beyond fiscal resources. From the five AHEC awardees, the following successes have been achieved to date:

  • Two sites developed stronger, enduring relationships with tribal partners that will result in future health careers programming and future health literacy programming for tribal youth;

  • Two sites integrated elements of the curriculum into previously established core programs, which has made those programs stronger and richer, and will endure over time;

  • One site introduced and promoted the curriculum at a meeting of all health science education teachers statewide that will hopefully result in independent adoption and implementation in various locations; and

  • All sites worked with youth groups experiencing significant health inequities and disparities, raising the capacity of those youth to be self-advocates and critical thinkers when it comes to their own health.


The Role of Clinicians and Health Care Systems

Thursday, July 21, 2016
2:00 – 3:30 pm, MT (4:00-5:30 ET)


Welcome and Adobe Connect Logistics
Speaker: Cherri Pruitt, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, Region VIII Maternal and Child Health Consultant


What IS the National Prevention Strategy and its Healthy Eating and Active Living Priorities
Speaker: Laurie Konsella, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Secretary, Acting Regional Health Administrator, Region VIII


Walk With a Doc — In this presentation, you will learn the origin, history, successes and failures of the Walk with a Doc program — a unique example of a successful community-clinical linkage program that is now in 245 sites across the United States and in 5 other countries. Speaker: Dr. David Sabgir, Founding CEO Walk With a Doc


Colorado's Hospital Compact Program — This presentation will describe a program that improves the nutrition environments in Colorado hospitals. A brief overview of the national healthy hospital movement and highlights from Colorado hospitals will also be shared. Speaker: Sharon Crocco, Healthy Eating Active Living Program Coordinator, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment


Questions & Answers and Additional Resources


Please contact: RegionVIIIFedPartners@HHS.GOV with any questions, to be added to our direct webinar series distribution list, or to request a written transcript of this event.

Continuing education credits from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for this activity are pending.

Technological Updates in the Treatment of Mental Health Conditions

July 28, 2016; 1-2:30 p.m. (ET)

Using technology designed to improve health care is not a new concept. However, access to evidence-based technology to assist with psychological health care treatment, such as psychotherapy, is limited.

Without an established standard of care, it is appropriate for providers to use a "null" or waitlist control group in clinical trials. However, in cases where health care providers apply technology-based solutions to an evidence-based practice, they are required to compare these solutions to active treatments.

One approach, becoming more prominent in medical literature, is to use a non-inferiority trial. The overall goal of this type of trial is to test and demonstrate that an experimental treatment is no worse than the current standard of care. Unfortunately, some reports about using this type of trial reveal confusion or a lack of understanding about the technical and philosophical distinctions of the trial design.

In this webinar, we will develop the tools needed to evaluate the quality of the evidence base to improve clinical care. We will use trials that incorporate technology to administer psychotherapy compared to the in-office standard of care as a practical case study.

At the conclusion of this webinar, participants will know how to:

  • Identify the key design elements of a non-inferiority study
  • Interpret the results of a non-inferiority trial
  • Evaluate the credibility of the evidence base for a treatment approach based on non-inferiority designs

Derek J. Smolenski, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Epidemiologist and Quantitative Methodologist
National Center for Telehealth & Technology
Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington

Maj. Demietrice L. Pittman, Ph.D.
Psychologist, Subject Matter Expert
Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury
Silver Spring, Maryland

Continuing Education
Continuing education credit is available from Professional Education Services Group (PESG).  You must register by 3 p.m. (ET) July 28, 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.

Mark your calendars for the 2016 DCoE Summit Sept. 13-15

Join health care professionals and academics to exchange knowledge on the "State of the Science: Advances, Current Diagnostics and Treatments of Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury in Military Health Care" at the 2016 Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury Summit.

Presented live September 13 – 15 from the Defense Health Headquarters in Falls Church, Virginia, this three-day hybrid event will connect a limited-size physical audience with up to 1,500 other attendees from around the world via a concurrent virtual component in real-time.

All attendees will have access to 28 hours of evidence-based treatment programing, plus opportunities to join session discussions and Q&As with speakers; earn continuing education credits; visit exhibitors; gain resources; share experiences through peer-to-peer learning; seek new and lasting collaborations with potential partners; and much more!

Plenary sessions will be organized into two tracks - psychological health and traumatic brain injury.

Register today, and get additional information at

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Other News

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 July 26th from 12:30–1:00pm EST. Please dial in at 1-605-475-3220 Passcode: 245171# to get caught up on all things NAO and AHEC!​​

Special Interest Groups

Please keep the momentum going on the NAO SIGs — I know that they have been useful! Remember; anyone can add a SIG and work with AHEC colleagues from anywhere in the country.​

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

To unsubscribe, please click here.

Email Contact: Robert M. Trachtenberg, MS

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