NAO UPDATE | Provided as a Member Benefit August 29th, 2018

Reporting to You from the President


One of the responses to the New Director Orientation evaluation was for more information about NAO Board and how the Board functions. Since we certainly want everyone engaged with our professional organization, we want to make this information available. I've also learned that if one person has the question, others do too.

The first place I will refer you is to the Bylaws. You may want to open them as you read this email. Those of you at the conference will remember that at the business meeting, program and center representatives voted for the 2018 update to the Bylaws. The changes had been made available for review prior to the vote "according to the bylaws." The Bylaws are reviewed every two years so that updates can be presented to the membership at the biennial conference when many members are present. Regarding the Board of Directors, the Bylaws state:


The Board shall be comprised of fifteen (15) Directors. Of this number, four (4) shall be members of the Leadership Committee of the AHEC Program Directors Constituency Group (PDCG) and four (4) shall be members of the Leadership Committee of the AHEC Center Directors Constituency Group (CDCG). In addition, the President Elect, the President, and the Past President of the Corporation shall be Directors.  Four (4) additional Directors shall be at-large members.

To know who the current Board members are, please refer to the NAO website.

To be eligible to be a Board member, they shall:

  • Be a designated representative of an Organizational Member in good standing;

  • In the case of the four (4) Directors elected from each Constituency Group, be a member of the respective Constituency Group Leadership Committee;

  • Have served as an active member of a standing or ad-hoc committee of the Board for at least one year prior to election to the Board;

  • During his/her term, be an active member of at least one Board committee.

Nomination – Candidates for election as Directors shall be nominated by the Governance Committee using a membership matrix and procedure proposed by the committee and approved by the Board.  The procedure shall include consultation with each Constituency Group Leadership Committee in nominating candidates for election from the respective Constituency Group.  The procedure shall also include an opportunity for qualified NAO members to offer themselves for nomination for at-large positions.  The membership matrix and nomination procedure shall be reviewed by the Governance Committee and Board no less than every other year.

Election - The Board shall elect Directors as needed to maintain the Board number and composition specified in Section 3.2.1.  2017-2018 was an unusual year for the treasurer's role when Mindy Bateman was elected as President Elect. Cathy Whaley, a member of CDCG Leadership Team, was elected to fill her CDCG representative seat on the Board and then to the office of treasurer. When Cathy left AHEC in May, Julie Bazan was elected to Cathy's CDCG seat, then to the office of treasurer. Dr. David Garr retired, resigning his PDCG seat, and Gloria Burnett was elected to that seat. During the past year we also elected Gail Emrick to an At Large seat on the Board.  Terms are for three years.

We have just completed the nomination of officers for the coming year and the results were reported in a recent Weekly Update. Officers are also nominated by the Governance Committee to the Board of Directors for election from current members of the Board of Directors. For more information, again, please see the Bylaws.

There you have it – the rules that were put in place to provide structure and consistency to our organization. Both Program Director Constituency Group and the Center Director Constituency Group have operating guidelines that align with the NAO Bylaws. Take a look at the appropriate Operating Guidelines to know more about the goals and guidelines.

The Executive Committee meets monthly the week prior to the Board meeting to discuss action items to be presented or discussed at the meeting the next week of the month. The Board meets on a monthly basis with reports from the committees, constituencies groups and National Training Center; finances are reviewed, and NAO business is discussed.

If you have further questions, please contact any member of your Board of Directors for more details and ask why they serve.

Last week, our interim CEO, Jacqueline Wynn, spoke with Dean Joseph DiPiro, Archie O. McCalley Chair, School of Pharmacy, Virginia Commonwealth University.

The backgroup is that as a past president of AACP, Dean DiPiro is a member of the Argus commission that looks at big picture issues each year. This year the Commission is examining what federally funded agencies have done to advance pharmacy practice models.  He was assigned to look at the AHEC system.  Dean DiPiro is interested which state AHECs come to mind that would have more advanced pharmacy care models?

"The American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy is studying pharmacy service components of federal health programs, including the AHEC system.  If you have exemplary pharmacy partnerships with your state AHEC please share this information directly with Joseph DiPiro, PharmD".

Please keep our friends and colleagues in Hawaii in your thoughts and prayers as they are dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Lane.


Paula Overfelt
President, NAO Board of Directors

CORE needs your data for 2017-2018 NAO One Pager!

Data is key to demonstrating the impact of AHEC programming and it is essential that NAO leadership continue to have current data to tell our story. We cannot tell you how beneficial it is for NAO to be able to report current numbers which means every year, the data needs to be updated. 
The good news is that our streamlined NAO Committee on Research, Outcomes, and Evaluations (CORE) data collection form and process make reporting easier than ever. There is only one online form and essentially all of the questions can be answered using data included in your federal report. Please help us gather the total numbers for 2017-2018 by completing the NAO CORE Data Collection Form no later than August 31, 2018. All data should be submitted via the survey on or
Your continued participation in CORE's data collection effort will provide us with the means to not only produce updated annual legislative flyers but help us determine trends and inform decision making. We look forward to receiving your data! Thank You! 
Questions? Contact CORE co-chairs  Detra Brown at or Jennifer Taylor at

National Training Center

NAO plays an important role on bridging the gap of HPV vaccination in rural areas
The number of adolescents who are up to date on HPV vaccination – meaning they started and completed the HPV vaccine series – increased five percentage points from 2016 to 2017, according to results from a national survey published last week in CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). While HPV vaccination rates are increasing, there is room for improvement as many adolescents have not received all the recommended doses of the HPV vaccine. Also, fewer adolescents in rural areas, compared with youth in urban areas, are getting the HPV vaccine. The number of adolescents who received the first dose of the HPV vaccine was 11 percentage points lower in rural areas compared to urban areas.

There's still much work to do! And NAO is the perfect source to do it. This is a perfect opportunity for the NAO network to show off its niche capabilities of reaching rural and underserved areas!

Look for more information soon on how we plan to address the rural vs. urban gap in HPV vaccination in our Year 5 plans! The focus will be on training rural providers or those who cater to the underserved. There will also be opportunities for more AHECs to receive funding in states with low rates.

How to overcome vaccine hesitancy through motivational interviewing = next webinar
How much of a problem is vaccine hesitancy? It’s complicated and there’s no easy solution! Find out how motivational interviewing can improve response to vaccination in our next webinar, “Evidence-Based Communication Strategies for Improving Child and Adolescent Vaccine Uptake,” set for 2 p.m. ET, Wednesday, Sept. 19. Please promote to health professionals and health professions students in your AHEC region by using this registration link:

This webinar fits the practice transformation HRSA core topic. What a great way to fulfill a HRSA requirement while also providing relevant hot-topic education to students. We can share information with you on who attended from your state!

National Immunization Awareness Month comes to a close! 
August in National Immunization Awareness Month (#NIAM18) and we are highlighting the importance of the HPV vaccine as Cancer Prevention! This campaign is designed to share a wealth of information with your followers/friends/partners through quick and easy to read messages! Not only does the campaign spread awareness of our cause, it connects us to partners and more people are added to our social media outreach! Please consider sharing this message and photo this week:

You can give your child safe, effective, & long-lasting protection from cancers caused by #HPV with two doses of HPV vaccine at ages 11-12. With over 100 million doses distributed in the United States, #HPVvax has a reassuring safety record that's backed by 10 years of monitoring & research. #AHEChpv




Small Groups Sessions on Lupus: Bridging the gap between primary care providers and rheumatologists in areas underserved by the specialty.
The American College of Rheumatology (ACR) would like to thank the Area Health Education Centers that participated in ACR's 2018 Small Group Provider Sessions on Lupus. 

Through education and networking sessions, AHECs connected local primary care providers to rheumatologists in areas currently underserved by the specialty.  Attendees received information on lupus, heard a personal perspective from a person living with the chronic, autoimmune disease, and had the opportunity to connect with a rheumatologist.

The sessions aimed to provide information on the signs and symptoms of lupus, populations most at risk, what to do if lupus is suspected, and information on the treatment and management.  In addition to raising awareness of lupus through education, the purpose was to facilitate a connection between primary care providers and rheumatologists with whom they could follow-up with if consultations or referral support is needed in the future.

Thank you to the following AHECs for raising awareness of this devastating and underdiagnosed disease:

Southeast Louisiana AHEC
Mid Rio Grande Border AHEC
Centennial AHEC
SPCC Atlanta Area AHEC
Southwest Georgia AHEC
Suwannee River AHEC
Southwestern Colorado AHEC
Western Arizona AHEC

If you are interested in submitting a letter of interest to participate in the next round of sessions, please look out for a funding announcement which will be included in October's weekly updates. 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

Will You Help to Improve the NAO Membership Experience?
The NAO Membership Committee is seeking new members to help us reach our goals for this next year. All membership types can participate in this committee. Will you be a part of strengthening our organization and improving NAO benefits and services? This year we will be working on engaging members and developing a Mentor Program.

Our next meeting will be on Tuesday, September 25th, 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

Those interested should email or call 303-923-3734.

Legislative Update

The Senate was back in session this week focusing on advancing the L-HHS and Defense appropriation bills as well as finishing up on pending nominations. Although the Senate was rumored to be in recess next week, lawmakers are scheduled to return on Monday, August 27 to resume consideration of the nomination of Lynn A. Johnson to be Assistant Secretary for Family Support, at HHS and vote on other pending nominees.

The House remains in recess until September 4, and there has been no shortage of news revolving around the West Wing and the White House. This is your end of the week update.


Yesterday, the Senate passed its third "minibus" package that combined Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education (L-HHS) Appropriations Bill and FY 2019 Department of Defense (DoD) Appropriations Bill. While numerous amendments were proposed during consideration of the FY 2019 L-HHS/DOD minibus, none of the adopted amendments impact previously-reported funding levels or program oversight for core medical research, public health, and education activities. The package was approved by a bipartisan vote of 85 to 7. For more on this please see Appropriations Chair, Sen. Richard Shelby's (R-AL)statement.


  • The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is awarding $8.6 million to the District of Columbia and all 30 states that applied for grants to help fund the expansion of Affordable Care Act health plans, develop and stabilize their ACA markets, and increase accessibility to coverage. The grants are funded by unspent money set aside by the ACA for the purpose of reviewing state health insurance proposals. (Washington Examiner)

  • A Health and Human Services Department report says that within its first 100 days, the Trump administration's blueprint to reduce drug costs has curbed price hikes from pharmaceutical companies, finding 60 percent fewer price increases for brand-name drugs compared with the same time period in 2017. The report did not analyze the impact of the price increases that did occur, but HHS Secretary Alex Azar highlighted that 15 drug makers have lowered prices or delayed price hikes this summer. (Modern Healthcare) The report can be found here: Report on 100 Days of Action, and a fact sheet here: 100 Days of Results Fact Sheet.


Public Meeting of the Secretary's Advisory Committee on National Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Objectives for 2030. The Committee will continue its deliberations regarding the nation's health promotion and disease prevention objectives and will develop recommendations regarding: stakeholder engagement and communication; implementation activities; and the roles of health equity, complex systems science and modeling, and summary measures in Healthy People 2030. If interested click here to learn more.

NIDDK New report. Diabetes in America, 3rd Edition: This report from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases compiles and assesses 2016-2018 epidemiologic, public health, clinical, and clinical trial data on diabetes and its complications in the United States. Learn more

American Academy of Family Physicians' The EveryONE Project: This initiative helps primary care physicians learn about and address the social determinants of health. It includes the Neighborhood Navigator, a database that allows users to search for services available in their zip code that will help them with issues such as hunger, paying for medical care and job training. Learn more here.  

USPSTF Releases Final Recommendations for Cervical Cancer Screenings: The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) released today a final recommendation statement on screening for cervical cancer. The Task Force found women ages 21 to 65 benefit from screening. The Task Force recommends the Pap test for women 21 to 29 and three strategies to screen women ages 30 to 65: Pap test, HPV test, or both in combination (co-testing). The Task Force recommends against screening in women younger than 21 years and in women older than 65 years who have had adequate prior screening. Click here to learn more.

HRSA Bureau of Health Workforce Call for Volunteer Grant Reviewers: Use your expertise to objectively evaluate and score applications against published evaluation criteria. Gain understanding of the grant-making process and have the opportunity to communicate with colleagues who share common backgrounds and interests. Learn more here if interested. 

Request for Nominations for the Advisory Committee on Training in Primary Care Medicine and Dentistry (ACTPCMD): The ACTPCMD provides advice and recommendations to the HHS Secretary, the Senate HELP Committee, and the House Committee on Energy and Commerce on matters concerning policy, program development, and other matters of significance concerning the medicine and dentistry activities under Part C of Title VII of the PHS Act, as well as recommends appropriation levels for programs under this part. If interested please click here.

Solicitation of Nominations for Appointment to the Board of Scientific Counselors (BSC), Office of Infectious Diseases (OID): The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is seeking nominations for membership on the BSC, OID.  The BSC, OID, consists of 17 experts in fields associated with the issues addressed by CDC's infectious disease national centers (e.g., respiratory diseases, antimicrobial resistance, foodborne diseases, zoonotic and vector borne diseases, sexually transmitted diseases) and specialties, including clinical and public health practice (including state and local health departments), research and diagnostics, bioinformatics, health policy/communications, and industry. If Interested click here.

Thank you for viewing. As always, we will work diligently to keep you informed.

Legislative update provided by Dale Dirks from Health and Medicine Counsel of Washington

Job Opportunities

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

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Email Contact: Denise Harris

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