NAO UPDATE | Provided as a Member Benefit August 16, 2017

From the CEO's Office

NAO Colleagues:

In this update, I report to you that our Board of Directors has met along with our Program Directors Constituency Group & our Center Directors Constituency Group. As a membership organization, it is important for us to come together and share resources and ideas to strengthen our organization.

As previously reported from our colleagues at the Health & Medicine Counsel of Washington, the U.S. House of Representatives have passed a Labor HHS appropriations bill through both sub-committee and full committee, with level funding for the AHECs in this bill. We are not expecting the U.S. Senate to move on its appropriations process until they return from August recess However, given all the “goings on” in Washington right now we may see the House approval get rolled into an omnibus spending bill (or maybe a continuing resolution). We continue to monitor the appropriations process as they unfold in Congress. Please remember, we continue to ask for $40 million in the final funding vehicle for FY 18, and urge you to continue to stay connected to your Congressional delegation so that they have a direct relationship to their local AHEC center and/or state program office

While we are working on FY18 appropriations we are also developing strategies around reauthorization of the AHEC program, as our authorization expired in 2015. That said, the NAO Board approved the establishment of a workgroup of constituents from all parts of NAO to assist our NAO Public Policy Committee and colleagues at Health & Medicine Counsel in a strategy for AHEC reauthorization to present to the NAO Board for the November 2017 meeting.

As I enter my second month as your CEO I am continually grateful to be part of such a robust and active community as AHEC. As I talk with our members around the country I see how committed and engaged many centers are at putting our mission into action even when resources are lacking. I see the dedication of program offices pulling as many loose threads as possible to weave opportunities for their states. I also have found the NAO Board of Directors to be one of the most engaged groups I have ever worked with in my career. I am truly thankful for the opportunity to be part of this organization.

Lastly, our Conference planning for 2018 biennial conference continues. Please save July 8-11, 2018 for our conference in DC.

In service,



Greetings NAO Family,

I am pleased to report that the NAO Board of Directors met last Thursday and approved the slate of NAO Officers for 2017-18 submitted by the NAO Governance Committee. Please join me in congratulating our elected officers, effective, October 1, 2017 – September 30, 2018.

  • Executive Committee
    • Paula Overfelt, CDCG, President
    • Mindy Bateman, At Large, President Elect
    • Jacqueline Wynn, PDCG, Immediate Past President
    • Christina Mathis, CDCG, Secretary*
    • Treasurer: At Large, To Be Filled*
  • PDCG
    • Michael French, Parliamentarian
    • David Garr
    • Sandra Pope*
    • Anna Wenders
  • CDCG
    • Aileen Harris
    • Mary Mitchell
    • Cathy Whaley
  • At Large
    • Petra Clark Dufner*
    • Kristina Fjeld Sparks*
    • Shawn Houck

Please note that if you are interested in serving in a board position we encourage you to become actively involved at the committee level as most of our elected officers have served diligently in prior committee leadership roles. Our standing committees are Conference Planning, Communications, CORE, Diversity, Finance, Membership and Public Policy. We would love to have you join a committee or two.

Also, at the our meeting last week, we discussed the Reauthorization of AHEC and the Board would like you to know that we have prioritized this as a policy agenda and will be working very closely with the Health and Medicine Council of Washington DC to position our AHECs for optimal reauthorization. We established a Reauthorization AdHoc Committee which includes: Jacqueline Wynn, Paula Overfelt, Mindy Bateman, Christina Mathis, Aileen Harris, Cathy Whaley, Michael French, Kristina Fjeld Sparks, Gloria Burnett, Petra Clark Dufner and Sandra Pope and Jack Register. We will be developing a timeline that we will share with you over the next couple of Weekly updates and plan to have our recommendations developed by our November 9 Board meeting. We will also be developing talking points and other resources that you may find helpful as you engage in conversations around reauthorization.

Lastly, on behalf of the Board, I called HRSA and was informed that they are sending award decisions and that most programs will hear something by early next week. Please note that timing is not indicative of the decisions.



National Training Center

Project Specialist position announcement

The HPV project is seeking to fill a vacancy on its leadership team. Applications are now being accepted for the position of Project Specialist – AHEC Integration. This position will work closely with three other Project Specialists who focus on continuing education, marketing/public relations and partnerships; all key aspects of the project. The AHEC Integration focus area works closely with participating centers and programs to ensure that the CDC HPV project activities enhance, support and integrate with core AHEC activities when possible. For more details about the position and information about how to apply, click here.

National Immunization Awareness Month

Did you know that August is National Immunization Awareness Month? The month highlights the value of vaccines for people of all ages! Through the HPV project, AHECs are promoting the month through a variety of ways including posting messages on their social media channels. Here are some sample messages that you can copy to help support the cause:

  • Ready for MS/HS? Off to college? What vaccines do you need? Take these CDC quizzes: #NIAM17
  • Boys & girls age 11-12 should be vaccinated w/the #HPV #vaccine. Read more on why boys should be vaccinated too
  • Providers utilize the CDC's vaccine schedule because it's based on the latest scientific information available
  • Providers: Don't let hesitant parents keep you from recommending #HPVvax. More tips on talking w/parents:
  • Take advantage of any visit to the clinician's office & ask about immunization updates & scheduling future vax-especially #HPVvax

Free CE - Promote to health professionals in your area!

Test the waters! Here’s your chance to provide CE on one of the new core topics addressed in the HRSA FOA – practice transformation! Send this information to your preceptors and health professions students, too!

“Raising HPV Vaccine Coverage Rates through Provider-Focused Interventions: Implementing Effective Quality Improvement”
3 p.m. ET, Thursday, Aug. 24
Dr. Alix Caslor will present on how health professionals can transform their practices by utilizing a sustainable intervention that fits or even simplifies their current work flow!
Continuing education credits are pending.
Registration link:

NAO’s Partnership with the American College of Rheumatology’s (ACR) Lupus Initiative®

Year 2 Wrap-Up

Thank you to this year’s AHEC Centers who participated in NAO’s partnership with the American College of Rheumatology’s (ACR) Lupus Initiative®. Participating AHECs conducted a series of learning and networking sessions designed to link providers to rheumatology specialists with whom they might not normally interact and raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of lupus. Making these connections and giving providers key information about this devastating and underdiagnosed disease is a primary aim of the project.

Participating AHECs provided education to 92 providers and 136 other health care professionals this year. The AHECs were Eastern Connecticut, Southwest Georgia, West Central Alabama, Western Montana, Mid-Rio Grande Border, and Permian Basin. A funding announcement for year three will be published in mid to late September for AHECs who may be interested in submitting a letter of interest. The ACR’s Lupus Initiative® is dedicated to improving the diagnosis, treatment, and management of lupus in populations disproportionately affected based on race, ethnicity, and gender.

NAO Committee Corner:
Membership Updates & Opportunities

Name of NAO Committee: Membership

Committee Chair: Lin Browning, Central Colorado AHEC Center Executive Director, Denver, CO;
Contact information: 10200 E. Girard Ave, B 131, Denver CO 80231,, 303.923.3734

Committee Focus of Work: In order to strengthen our organization and improve NAO benefits and services, the Membership Committee plans, oversees, and evaluates membership services and issues in an effort to maintain a diverse, comprehensive membership of program offices, centers, associates, and individuals who pay dues to support NAO activities. The committee is responsible for determining membership categories, dues structure, and proposing amendments needed to bylaws that reflect membership structure. The committee also conducts research related to member needs/wants

Recent Successes to Share: The Membership Committee has been working in partnership with the Center Director Constituency Group to develop and distribute a survey/form to Program Center Directors to capture updated Center Director contact information. A second survey is being developed to solicit feedback on membership services and benefits to improve membership overall.

New Member Opportunities: This committee has a brand new chair that is seeking a Program Director Constituency Group representative to serve as a co-chair. We are rebuilding the committee and are currently seeking new members

Meeting Schedule/Call Information: A regular meeting schedule will be developed shortly. Our first meeting will be on Tuesday, August 22nd, 12:30p PST, 1:30p MST 2:30p CST and 3:30p EST.

Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: Or Telephone: Dial: +1.415.762.9988 (US Toll) or +1.646.568.7788 (US Toll) Meeting ID: 3034818686

Other News

Center Directors and Program Directors

Center Director Constituency Group Call – for all members!
Please join us!

Wednesday, August 9
12 noon CST (1 p.m. EST)
Passcode: 33402919

Special Interest Groups

JOIN US! Are you looking for resources to help your Center(s) move forward? Do you have resources other Centers can benefit from? The Sharing Resources Special Interest Group (SIG) will be meeting 8/21/17, 11a Pacific|12p Mountain|1p Central|2p Eastern.

We will be discussing Sharing Resources for the New AHEC grant requirement. Do you have ideas and strategies to share? Are you looking for ideas? This group meets on the 3rd Monday, bi-monthly and we hope you will join us. We use a video-conferencing/tele-conferencing for our meetings.

Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: Or iPhone one-tap: +14086380968,,3037247865# or +16465588656,,3037247865# Or Telephone: +1 408 638 0968 (US Toll) Meeting ID: 303 724 7865

Interested members are asked to sign up here to be added to the group distribution list.

Contact Jennifer Hellier, Colorado AHEC for more info. | 303.724.7865

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.

To unsubscribe, please click here.

Email Contact: Mark Hamley

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