Area Health Education Centers (AHECs) are long-term educational
strategies. These academic and community partnerships train health
care providers in sites and programs that are responsive to State
and local needs. Health career enhancement and recruitment programs
for K-12 students are emphasized.
of the AHEC Program is to improve the supply, distribution, diversity
and quality of the healthcare workforce, ultimately increasing access
to health care in medically underserved areas.
AHECs link the
resources of university health science centers with local planning
and educational and clinical resources. This network of health-related
institutions provides multidisciplinary educational services to
students, faculty and local practitioners, and ultimately improve
health care delivery in medically underserved areas.
The AHEC program
requires major changes both in the traditional method of training
medical and other health professions students and in the relationship
between university health science centers and community health service
As of October 1, 2007, there are 53 AHEC Programs and 221 affiliated
AHEC Centers ongoing in 45 states and the District of Columbia.
The states of Kansas, Michigan, North Dakota, and South Dakota
and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico do not have federally funded
AHEC Programs or AHEC Centers.
The Health Professions Education Partnerships of 1998 reauthorized
the AHEC Program (Basic AHEC and Model AHEC). The Basic AHEC Program
was initiated in FY 1972; the Model State Supported AHEC Program
was initiated in FY 1993. Funding is provided via federal cooperative
agreements/grants and matching state and local funds.
entities include public or non-profit private accredited schools
of medicine or osteopathic medicine or accredited schools of nursing,
if no AHEC Program is in operation in a state.
Centers include nonprofit 501© (3) organizations, local community
colleges, community hospitals, and community health centers, with
75% of the AHEC Program award is contracted out with AHEC Centers.
In a typical year, AHECs
- Train 37,000
health professions students (17,000 medical students and 20,000
other health professions students) in community-based sites;
- Work with
approximately 1,500 federally-funded community and migrant health
center sites and other underserved area sites, 800 health departments
and 180 National Health Service Corps sites;
- Provide health
career enhance and recruitment activities of 20 hours or more
to 50,000 students grades 9-12; and
- Provide continuing
education to 326,000 local health care providers
Committee on Interdisciplinary, Community-Based Linkages (ACICBL)
AHEC Program supports the Advisory Committee on Interdisciplinary,
Community-Based Linkages (ACICBL), authorized under Section 756,
Title VII, Part D of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act. This
Committee 1) provides advice and recommendations to the Secretary
of Health and Human Services concerning policy and program development
and other matters of significance related to the programs and activities
described under Title VII, Part D of the PHS Act; and 2) prepares
and submits a report describing the activities of the Committee
including findings and recommendations to the Secretary; the Senate
Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions; and the House
Committee on Energy and Commerce. Programs represented by the
Committee include Area Health Education Centers, Geriatric Education
and Training Programs, Allied Health and Special Projects, among
others. For additional specific information, refer to the ACICBL.