NAO UPDATE | Provided as a Member Benefit March 21, 2016

From the CEO's Office

It's a busy week ahead, as ​I'll be in Washington this week with NAO board president Jacqueline Wynn as we meet with Congressional members to discuss the AHEC ​Program and our request for $40 million appropriation for FY2017. We expect to make visits with key appropriators during our time on the Hill.​

While in D.C. Jacqueline and I will also attend an AAMC-hosted meeting featuring Dr. Luis Padilla, Acting Associate Administrator of the Bureau of Health Workforce, where he will be discussing Title VII (where the AHEC Program 'resides') and Title VIII Programs. Jacqueline and I will also be joined at that meeting by Kristina Fjeld-Sparks, co-chair of the NAO Public Policy Leadership Team and the director of the New Hampshire AHEC Program.​ We'll be sure to keep you all informed as to the outcome of both our Hill visits as well as the AAMC meeting with Dr. Padilla.

There's quite a bit of content in this week's Monday Update; grab a cuppa and take a look at the items below....and be sure to register ( for the 2016 NAO Conference. I look forward to seeing YOU there!

Read & Share the MU!

Last week ​we saw a doubling of "click-throughs" after the message to share the Monday Update went out to you all. This is rather important, as the Monday Update is the primary tool to reach our members on all things NAO throughout the country. Great work; please keep it up!

A Plea to Leaders/Directors/Administrators: Please consider the difference it makes to share the MU. The simple act of forwarding the MU will help engage our full membership to support and advance our organizational values and strategic priorities. Thank you for taking a moment or two during your day to forward the MU on to your staff and colleagues. And remember: if one of your sister AHECs in your state is NOT a member of NAO, please be sure to encourage them to become members. Here's how: ​​

SAVE THE DATE: March 31st 3:00 Eastern Webinar: "Preparing AHECs for the Winds of Change"

As AHECs prepare for our next grant cycle, we need to be aware of discussions occurring at the federal level about workforce and Title VII programs. On Thursday, March 31st at 3:00 Eastern, with funding support from the NAO Board, a group of AHEC program directors and members of the NAO Public Policy Committee will share information gleaned from federal reports, advisory committees, site visits and recent grants to inform the network so we can all be better prepared for the future. We hope you'll be able to join us for this webinar. This dialogue will continue when we are together in D.C. in June at the NAO conference.​

***Here's the registration link for participants***

"Countdown to the Capitol" Webinar Series

The third "Countdown to the Capitol" webinar on March 11th was a great success and chock-full of useful information. Be sure to check out the archived version on the NAO website if you didn't get a chance to participate; everything anyone needs for a successful trip to the Hill can be found at the link below:

Register, register, register!

The NAO 2016 conference is only 99 days away! Be sure to register as soon as you can! We all need to come together for this vitally important conference, as this is our opportunity to bring our exceptional AHECs from across the country to work and learn together as a unified voice, not just for our legislators to see, but also to share best practice, learn from one another, and hear from influential voices in the healthcare environment.​ We need YOU at our conference!

Register now!

Community Roundtables Year 1 Report: Bridging Cancer and Chronic Disease

The Community Roundtables Year 1 Report (click on link) from our partner organization GWU Cancer Institute e-newsletter was recently released. This report was developed to highlight successes and challenges of the inaugural Community Roundtables GWU CI convened with Northeast Kentucky, Champlain Valley, Gulfcoast South and Northeast South Dakota AHECs last year. David Gross from Northeast Kentucky AHEC also led the submission of an abstract and we have been selected to present at the upcoming NAO Conference in DC. Well done, participating AHECs!

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 29th from 12:30--1:00 pm EST. On our most recent call we primarily discussed AHEC funding, the next AHEC grant cycle and especially the NAO 2016 Washington, D.C conference this coming June (register now! 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 in-person to keep the work alive!​

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

Trending Now: Rapid Cycle Quality Improvement

Do you have experience or expertise in Rapid Cycle Quality Improvement (RCQI)? Are you willing to share this knowledge with others? The NAO Committee on Research and Evaluation (CORE) and National Training Center (NTC) teams are planning a working session on RCQI at the upcoming NAO conference since this may be a requirement in the next AHEC grant cycle with HRSA. If you are interested in co-presenting, or know someone who should be, please contact Jaime Vallejos, MD, MPH from MassAHEC at:

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

Alabama leads HPV Roundtable

The Alabama AHECs, led by Regina Knox of the West Central Alabama AHEC, sponsored the second meeting of the Alabama HPV Roundtable in the state last week. Stakeholders from across the state participated in discussions about how to bolster HPV vaccination rates in the state including NAO's HPV Project Director Gretchen Forsell, and two CDC representatives: Melinda Wharton, MD, MPH, Director, Immunization Services Division, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease; and Achal Bhatt, PhD, NAO's HPV Project Officer. Alabama did an excellent job hosting the roundtable. Many opportunities came about for not only the AHECs' work in HPV but also in core AHEC activities.

Hosting a Successful Continuing Education Webinar

Do you want to incorporate webinars into your continuing education outreach but are not sure where to start? We have training to help you get started! Join us for "Hosting a Successful Continuing Education Webinar," at 3 p.m. ET on Wednesday, April 6. This training will introduce participants to the basics of planning and executing a live and/or recorded online event and how to acquire and manage continuing education credit for the event. Participants will learn how this format differs from face-to-face events and about the resources necessary for implementation. This webinar is open to all AHECs regardless of their participation in the HPV project. Register Now

Powerful Programming

Colorado AHEC awardees are making easy work of leveraging their health literacy project for the benefit of other programming and their community partners. Southwest CO AHEC designed their health literacy project around youth of the Southern Ute Indian Tribe, a traditionally underserved group that the AHEC has previously worked with in a limited fashion. Recently, the AHEC received a call from the education director of the Tribe who wanted to discuss reserving several spots at the AHEC's summer Health Careers Camp. The impetus for the call came from health literacy project participants who were expressing an interest in health careers; new career pathways for these youth have now been opened. A definite win for area tribal youth, the CO AHEC, and for stronger community partnerships.

2016 Conference Information



Early Bird registration for the NAO 2016 Washington, DC Conference is now OPEN! This is the perfect time to take a moment and register for the upcoming conference so you can take advantage of the early bird registration discount. You can register individually by going to and clicking on the link for the conference found on the home page. To register, click on the registration tab and follow the instructions. If you wish to register a group of people, you can print the .pdf registration form also found on the registration tab, complete one for each person, and fax them to the NAO registration team at 414-768-8001. Remember, we must receive your fax by the end of business on Friday, May 13th in order to take advantage of the early bird discount.

  • New Directors Orientation: If you are a new Center or Program Director, don't forget to sign up for this exciting and informative training for all new directors. You must register in advance to be able to attend.
  • Monday Evening Welcome Reception: Enjoy a nice evening of networking with your fellow AHECers, and check out the poster session as well. You must register in advance to attend.
  • Tuesday Evening Dinner and Awards Banquet: Come join all attendees at a spectacular and fun Dinner and Awards Banquet. Network with other AHEC staff, and come support our award winners. We have some exciting, and absolutely fun entertainment for you. You must register in advance to attend.


Don't forget to make your hotel reservations at the


and secure the NAO special negotiated conference rate.

Hotel reservation deadline is June 6, 2016

You can make your hotel reservations on-line by selecting the Hotel tab on the conference web site. Please take a moment to read all of the important information included on that page. A link to make your hotel reservation is noted in this area of the conference website. Please note that the last day to book your reservation with the Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown Hotel and get the NAO conference rate is by 5pm, Friday, June 6th. After this date, the rooms will be released back to the hotel and any reservations made after that date will be based upon availability and current room rates.

A SPECIAL ROOM RATE of $229/night - single/double has been reserved for NAO conference attendees. Please have your credit card available when making your reservation. The hotel will charge a (1) night’s deposit to your credit card in order to hold your reservation.

NOTE: All reservations must be made on or before the cutoff of June 6, 2016 to take advantage of the negotiated NAO Room rate. Any reservations made after the cutoff date shall be at the hotels current available rate.

Book early to ensure you get the group rate.

Please consider when making your plans for Washington, DC, to do your best to arrange to stay in the conference hotel. You will benefit as the conference events will all be at your doorstep, and you'll have lots of opportunities to network and meet up with new and old friends. And NAO will benefit; as you may know, NAO conference contracts are signed with hotels a couple of years in advance. These contracts include a specified number of "room nights" which we have to fill. If we fall short, we pay a significant amount of money in penalties. Given the current economy, our organization, like many others, is suffering short-falls. It is possible that NAO may not be able to afford to do annual conferences if we end up too far in the red, so please, do what you can to continue to support NAO by booking your room at the Renaissance Hotel.

See you in Washington, DC!

Mary Craig and Anna Wenders
Conference Co-chairs

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 date for the upcoming Countdown to the Capitol webinar:

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.


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