NAO UPDATE | Provided as a Member Benefit September 26, 2016

From the CEO's Office

Last Tuesday, September 20th, the second webinar was held for the NAO membership regarding the AHEC re-design and the AHEC FY2017 FOA. Most of the presentation focused on responses to questions posed to the HRSA Bureau of Health Workforce that came out of the August 8th webinar — which kicked off our series. Of course, a number of excellent additional questions were raised last Tuesday that we'll work on getting answers to from HRSA in advance of the next webinar (date: TBD) and the release of the FOA. Please note, however, that we will likely not get ​responses to questions that seek exact definitions of terms (i.e. population health, as was mentioned). Also many of the questions that arose that I was not able to answer seem appropriate for HRSA BHW staff during one of the expected two or three technical assistance calls. Once I know those dates I will certainly let you all know, assuming I hear before you all do. Please be sure to read through all the documents related to the NAO-HRSA dialogue and AHEC re-design that have been shared here and via the webinars in the file share pod a number of times over the past few months to stay up to speed.

Good Reads!

National Training Center

Did you know HPV education fits into AHEC redesign?

Do you realize that the HPV project is a population health continuing education component that fits well within the AHEC Redesign? Did you realize that it can also be a practice transformation topic? Creating an environment where a strong practitioner recommendation is supported throughout the clinic is key to improved vaccination rates and is also an example of quality improvement activities for clinics. Test our some HPV activities this year by being involved in the NAO's CDC project. If another AHEC in your state is already involved, ask to work with them on educational activities.

Year 3 Kick-off a success!

It was great to see all of the interest in Year 3 of the HPV project at the kick-off webinar last week. If you missed it and want to catch all of the details about how to apply for funding, request the recording by emailing Application materials will be due Oct. 31.

Socio-economics, geography play a part in HPV rates

A research study conducted by Penn State looked at girls ages 12 to 17 from nine states in the U.S. and found a correlation between the mother's socioeconomic resources and their daughter's initiation and completion of the three-shot HPV vaccine. Find out more about how researchers suggest to tailor interventions.

Closing out Year One; A Lasting Impact

As mentioned in the last post, in addition to 81 students who completed the first year of Project SHARE, an additional 214 students were exposed to stand-alone lessons via peer to peer presentations, summer camp integrations, and summer internship program integrations. Here are some of the other lasting impacts our year one efforts have had:

  • An enduring integration of various Project SHARE lessons within other AHEC summer programs
  • Stronger partnerships with Indian tribes who want their youth more involved with AHEC programs
  • Stronger partnerships with Indian tribes who want the Project SHARE lessons to endure within their own community programming
  • Dissemination of Project SHARE throughout the health science classrooms of Montana
  • Work that affected youth with extreme risks for health disparities and health inequities
  • Empowered youth who initiated a fund-raising team to address health issues they wanted to impact

Congratulations, year one awardees!

Health Literacy Month – Upcoming Events

Friday, October 7, 2016, Greensboro, NC. 3rd Annual Patient Education Summit: Hands-On Advancement Tools and Strategies. Sponsored by Greensboro AHEC, Southern Regional AHEC and Cone Health; register early at

October is Health Literacy Month. Send in your health literacy events scheduled during the month of October, and get them listed in the Monday Update newsletter. Send to:

NAO-American College of Rheumatology Lupus Initiative Update

The American College of Rheumatology's (ACR) Lupus Initiative (TLI) continues to successfully educate non-rheumatology healthcare professionals about lupus and health disparities. The ACR recently held a multi-session, small-group, cohort-style virtual education series for healthcare providers in Southwest Georgia and the Pacific Northwest, funded by the Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Minority Health (OMH).

Especially instrumental in the development and execution of this provider education series and its accompanying community awareness campaign were the Southwest Georgia AHEC in Albany, GA and the Cascades East AHEC in Bend, OR. This series built on lupus fundamentals and included sessions on lab testing, medications, pregnancy and pediatric considerations, lupus flares, and health maintenance and preventive care. Twelve healthcare providers – advanced nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurses, and MDs – engaged with the ACR in this series that emphasized the health disparate nature of lupus, especially as it pertains to African American and American Indian/Alaska Native populations in both series' sites. 100% of participants were pleased ("a lot" or "somewhat") with the pace, delivery, and content of the sessions, and 100% self-reported increased levels ("a lot" or "somewhat") of awareness, knowledge, and competence regarding lupus' signs, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment. Each session was recorded and will become enduring activities for continuing medical education (CME) credit available through TLI's website later this year. Both AHECs will be involved in further ACR efforts under renewed OMG funding for 2016-2017.


2016 Joining Forces Wellness webinar schedule

Fall has arrived and the 2016 Joining Forces Wellness webinar schedule is ready to be announced. In collaboration with the White House Joining Forces staff and the Center for Deployment Psychology at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, we are pleased to offer the following webinars the week of Veterans Day:

All webinars are 12-1 p.m., ET

Monday, November 7

Joining Forces to Address Suicide in Military and Veterans

Tuesday, November 8

Caring for Caregivers

Wednesday, November 9

Pain Management – Nuances for the Military and Veteran Patient Population

Thursday, November 10

The Deployment Life Cycle of the Military Family: Implications for Health Care Providers

Friday, November 11
Veterans Day

What Veterans Want their Health Care Providers to Know and How Academic Medical Centers Can Contribute

Registration will open shortly, and we will be sure to share that information when it is ready. In the meantime, please mark your calendars for what promises to be a wonderful week of learning and feel free to share with others. Last year, we had over 1,000 providers and trainees participate in the webinar series, and it would be amazing if we could double participation.

As always, many thanks for your support of our military service members, veterans, and their families.

Other News

Rural Immersion Institute of the North July 12 – August 2, 2017

Applications for RIIN 2017 are Now Open!

The Alaska Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) program requests your assistance in sharing an exciting interdisciplinary opportunity with your students. The Rural Immersion Institute of the North (RIIN) program is designed to expose pre-professional health majors to a rural and/or underserved healthcare experience. The program was developed over the course of three years and launched in June 2016.

Students will have a one-of-a-kind experience traveling to some of the most remote communities in the United States in order to walk in the shoes of healthcare providers in the Last Frontier. Many students sign up for international experiences where they take part in high risk clinical scenarios in an attempt to enhance their resumes and skillsets. The RIIN program provides these same students with access to a safe yet culturally diverse healthcare landscape without leaving the country.

The AHEC program aims to strengthen the healthcare workforce in rural and underserved communities. RIIN provides students with early exposure to rural practice, offering the perfect backdrop to entice future practitioners to the neediest communities in our country.

More information is available through the Health Careers Exploration website. There is also a PDF brochure for download. Eligible RIIN applicants include undergraduate juniors and seniors, gap year students and professionals returning to graduate school including, but not limited to, the following areas of study:

  • Medicine
  • Psychiatry
  • Dentistry
  • Pharmacy
  • Chiropractic
  • Nurse Practitioner
  • Physician Assistant
  • Psychology
  • Social Work
  • Speech Language Pathology
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Physical Therapy
  • Public Health
  • Healthcare Administration

Apply online at

Click here for a PDF Brochure

Tuesdays with Trachtenberg

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

Please join us on the next "Tuesdays with Trachtenberg" call, which will be tomorrow, Tuesday September 27th 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! I am sure we'll be discussing the AHEC 2017 redesign and FOA! Join us!

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. It may make sense to create more SIGs regarding AHEC redesign with a focus on practice transformation. If there is interest, we can supply a dial-in number and log-in for those interested in sharing information and resources.​

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

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