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AHEC Blog

High School Students Camp Experience

 Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Sparking a healthy interest

Students get behind-the scenes glances at medical careers

To read more about the summer camp experience, please go to the Douglas County Partners for Student Success (DCPSS) article at:

http://www.dcpss.org/sparking-a-healthy-interest/

 


 


 


AHECSW's New Flagship Programs; Utilizing the Forces That Drive Future Innovation to Create Change and Impact in Rural America Specifically in Healthcare

 Monday, July 11, 2016


 

 

 

Chris Guastaferro, Executive Director

The last several months at AHECSW have been exciting.There has been a swell of new programs and an inflection of past programs. As we are very careful in studying the educational trends across the U.S. and the specific needs of our rural communities in health as it pertains to healthcare careers, we’ve found gaps that need to be filled and have capitalized on a few very cool opportunities that I think you’ll be excited about. Before I touch upon these programs however, I would like to highlight our funders who, without them, we couldn’t accomplish our goals. The Ford Family Foundation (TFFF) has been gracious in helping to capture our vision with a generous two-year grant of $61,300. With its mission of “successful citizen’s and vital rural communities”, TFFF will play a significant role in the development and sustainability of Bright Works Oregon Healthcare Team and our ReConnect College Intern programs. In addition, The Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) has granted AHECSW $5,000 and The Oregon Medical Education Foundation (OMEF) has recently given us the timely gift of $20,000 specifically for our ReConnect Pre-Health Scribe program. The goals and objectives of OMEF are to serve as the fiscal intermediary for worthy medical and health-related programs as well as to stimulate and assist new and current medical education programs. And lastly, we want to thank the Douglas County Education Services District (DCESD) and the Douglas County Partners for Student Success (DCPSS) for granting us a two-year $37,800 contract to support our robust Career and Technical Education (CTE) health summer programs, as well as an additional $30,000 for technical support in the pioneering of the new Oregon Connections program.

Our team is trying to imagine the best possible ways to ‘Grow Our Own’ healthcare workforce in southwest Oregon while keeping up with an ever changing health landscape, a generation of highly creative and innovative thinkers, new technology growing at light speed, and current and future needs of our rural communities. When looking at these agents of change, it can seem somewhat daunting and is best described as a moving target. There are many highly qualified social impact organizations that are in the process of creating models to not just keep up with status quo, but are getting ahead of the curve by looking at the change agents mentioned above as tools and opportunities rather than threats to avoid.Our new flagship programs are doing just that; utilizing the forces that drive future innovation to create change and impact in rural America, specifically in healthcare.

Bright Works Oregon: The objective of this program is to work with key partners to build a bridge between the healthcare industry and education to better support local students and prepare them for the next steps in their career journey.This is a 1-4-year program depending on when a student enters.
http://www.healthyoregon.com/programs/bwo

ReConnect Summer Interns Program: The objective of this program is to offer current or just graduated University students in pre-health programs more healthcare-like experiences within a rural setting to strengthen their applications when applying to formal medical education programs. The interns are working directly with the CTE Summer Program students. This is a 7-9-week program. 
http://www.healthyoregon.com/programs/college-students

CTE Summer MedChamps Program: The objective of these three robust programs is to engage underserved youth in CTE and Science, Technology, Education, Art and Math (STEAM) related programs pertaining to healthcare. These camps will link to out of school programs, increase coordination of pre-employment skill training and post-high school training, as well as increase unique experiences for these students.This is a 3-week summer program that will happen over the next two years.
http://www.dcpss.org/soar-with-summer-ctesteam/

ReConnect Scribe Program: Similar to the ReConnect Interns Program, the ReConnect Scribes also offer healthcare-like experiences within a rural setting to strengthen their applications when applying to formal medical education programs. However, this is geared specifically toward new pre-med graduates who are taking a “gap year” to commit to working as scribes at a rural location. This year, we have four students who are working at Umpqua Community Health Center (UCHC) in Roseburg. These students will also be working with a select group from Bright Works Oregon Program and take them through university-level case studies throughout next school year.This is a 12-month program.

Over the next few weeks, you will be kept up-to-date with a plethora of new programs through our blogs, written by the very folks that are the ‘boots on the ground’.

On behalf of AHECSW’s Board of Directors, I want to thank the many participants and organizations that continually give selfless, countless hours and resources to the very programs that create the greatest impact in our community.You truly get the importance of what it means to ‘Grow your Own’.

Sincerest Regards,

P.S. With our growing capacity, the need to increase our staff has reached a tipping point.I’m very pleased to introduce to you our new staff and program members who will help catapult our organization to exceed our goals.

TAWNIE GOETZ-KENNEDY

Position: High School Coordinator
Hometown: Roseburg Oregon
Background: I have worked as a Firefighter/medic with local departments over a 15-year period. I spent time as a 911 dispatcher. Then I worked for the local mental health agency with kids and adults. Through all this I have also been a teacher here at UCC teaching EMT/CPR/First aid.
What you look forward to in this position: I look forward to growing programs for the youth in our county
Favorite movie: Pretty Women
Favorite music artist: Varies on my mood
What you love to do in your free time: Family time, gardening flowers and veggies, hiking to waterfalls, camping, reading

LACEY FERGUSON

Position: Education Coordinator
Hometown: Monroe, Oregon
Background: Ten years of classroom teaching at the middle school level, part-time wedding and event coordination, and multiple years of planning and directing Outdoor School camps for 6th graders.
What you look forward to in this position: As the Education Coordinator, I look forward to expanding the programs offered through AHECSW. I hope to play a part in bringing a Health Occupations Pathway of Study to high schools in Douglas County, as well as expand our student programming beyond Douglas County to other sections of our Southwest Oregon AHECSW region.
Favorite movies: Anchorman, A League of Their Own, Despicable Me
Favorite music artists: Hillsong Worship, All Sons & Daughters, Dave Matthews Band, Adele
What you love to do in your free time: Be with family, go to concerts, be near water, play volleyball

CONNER OLSON

Position: CTE Summer Camp Coordinator – ReConnect College Intern Program
Hometown: Tigard, OR
School attending:  Willamette University
Major: Biochemistry
Profession(s) interested in exploring:  Cardiology, Neurosurgeon, Cancer Research
What you look forward to in this position: I look forward to working with the students and helping them learn about rural healthcare. Specifically helping those who would not normally be introduced to healthcare and healthcare opportunities. Also, most importantly help AHECSW continue to expand its message throughout the community.
Favorite movie: Lord of The Rings
Favorite music artists: AC DC, Lumineers, Aerosmith, & Adele
What you love to do in your free time:  I enjoy reading, playing basketball, and football. I also like the outdoors and spend my time fishing, hiking and just general exploring

TEAGAN SETTELMEYER

Position: CTE Summer Camp Coordinator – ReConnect College Intern Program
Hometown: Cottage Grove
School attended/will be: University of Portland, Oregon Health and Science University
Major: Biology
Future profession: Medical Doctor
What you hope to accomplish: Improve access to and efficiency of healthcare delivery for underserved populations
Favorite Movie: Goodwill Hunting
Favorite music artist: Chance the Rapper
What you love to do in your free time: go for a run, play any sport, read a book, cook something weird

 

EMILY SWANSON

Position: CTE Summer Camp Coordinator – ReConnect College Intern Program
Hometown: Roseburg, OR
School: Roseburg High School, Oregon State University
Major: Biology
Professions interested in exploring: Primary care physician, pediatrician
What you look forward to in this position: First of all, I am really excited to get to give back to the community I grew up in. It is so exciting to see healthcare education becoming more prominent in my hometown and I am so glad I get to be a part of it. I also look forward to learning more about rural healthcare and figuring out if I want to pursue that in the future.
Favorite movie: Inside Out
Favorite music artists: Walk the Moon, Relient K
What you love to do in your free time: I love spending time with friends, baking, playing the saxophone in marching band, hiking, and spending time outdoors

JEREMIAH JURICH

Position: AmeriCorps – Pre-Health and CTE Summer Camp Coordinator – ReConnect College Intern Program
Hometown: Edmonds, Washington
School: Whitman College
Major: Biochemistry
Professions interested in exploring:  Taking a couple years off before I go off to either med school or grad school in evolutionary Biology
What you look forward to in this position:  I hope to impact some lives and help get people exposed not only to the common health professions but also to rural medicine and its unique qualities. I also want to gauge my interest in teaching as well.
Favorite movie(s): Lord of the Rings and The Godfather
Favorite Musical Artist(s): Tame Impala and The Beatles
Favorite Artist: John Baldessari
What you love to do in your free time: kayaking, skiing and playing with dogs 

JAIDE FARR
  
Position: Scribe at UCHC – ReConnect College Scribe Program
Hometown: Springfield, Oregon
School attended: Willamette University
Major: Biochemistry and Anthropology
Professional interest: Medicine (possibly pediatrics)
What you look forward to in this position: I think it is really fulfilling to help other young people to establish their goals and to get excited about medicine and especially rural medicine. Already with my short time scribing at UCHC, I have seen that there is a shortage of long-term primary care providers in Roseburg. Hopefully through this position I can help alleviate this problem by getting aspiring healthcare workers excited about rural medicine.
Favorite movie(s): The Harry Potter movies
Favorite music artist: The Killers
What you love to do in your free time: Snowboarding, hiking, camping, spending time with family and friends

MICHAEL GRAHAM

Position: Scribe at UCHC – ReConnect College Scribe Program
Hometown: Roseburg, OR
School: Oregon State University
Major: Kinesiology
Professional Interests: Physician Assistant
What you look forward to in this position:  I think the AHECSW Scribe position will be one of the best learning experiences I could hope for from a medical knowledge, patient care techniques, and clinic workings standpoint. The opportunity to work alongside physicians in my hometown, the town I hope to practice in, is something I am looking forward to immensely.
Favorite movie:  Gladiator, Jet Li's Fearless, and Interstellar
Favorite music artists:  Bob Marley and the Red Hot Chili Peppers
What you love to do in your free time:  I like to spend time with my family and friends, play sports, and read interesting, educational books on topics that interest me. I've recently undertaken learning to play Disc Golf.......I still am not very good.

LUCAS SHORT

Position: Scribe at UCHC – ReConnect College Scribe Program
Hometown: Roseburg
School attended: University of Oregon and Oregon State University
Major: Biology and Anatomy and Physiology
Professional interest: Medical Doctorate or Doctor of Osteopathy
What you look forward to in this position:  I hope to learn the inner workings and systems of the UCHC clinic and expand my medical knowledge and skills.
Favorite movie: Anything by the Coen brothers
Favorite musical artist: Ween, Sublime, yes, and all kinds of classic rock and hip-hop
What you love to do in your free time:  I love to be outdoors doing any physical activities, including basketball, disc golf, hiking, and swimming

AUDREY TAYLOR

Position: Scribe at UCHC – ReConnect College Scribe Program
Hometown: I grew up as a Navy brat so home has been a lot of places. In the last 10 years: Portland, OR, Salem, OR and Roseburg, OR
School Attended: Willamette University
School Major(s): Latin American Studies and Spanish, Minor: Chemistry
Professional interest: Doctor (MD or DO) and Public Health Researcher. Specific areas: Women's health, Latino/a health, pediatrics, cardiometabolic diseases, genetics, and epidemiology.
What you look forward to in this position: Being able to work one-on-one with doctors and patients, as well as learning about the needs of the community and helping to meet these needs
What you hope to accomplish: Increase my knowledge and appreciation for medicine, as well as learn more about myself and where my skill set/ interests fits into the medical field.
Favorite movie(s): The Princess Bride, Star Wars, Hombres Armados, Frozen
Favorite music artist(s): James Bay, Ryn Weaver, Odesza, Beyoncé, Taylor Swift
What I love to do in my free time: Workout, read, play with my dogs, paint, go wine tasting, hike, try new things, travel, and spend time with friends and family

 

 


CTE Summer Camps - Register Now!

 Thursday, May 19, 2016

Click on the links below to register for a CTE Summer Camp!!!

“MedChamps” Middle School Camp: June 27-July 1 (M-F), Daily times 9:00am-2:00pm

MedChamps Registration Link: https://www.volgistics.com/ex/portal.dll/ap?ap=467874508

Contact: Lacey Ferguson, Education Coordinator Email: Lferguson@healthyoregon.com

The Area Health Education Center is hosting a Middle School Healthcare Exploration Camp. This five-day camp will be held at UCC. This camp is open to middle school students in grades 6th – 8th, ages 11-14. Our program will have the capacity to serve up to 30 youth. We will present career pathway information, provide hands-on skill experiences, and guarantee fun as we explore rural healthcare, various medical careers, and spend a day conducting a mock diagnosis. This camp will be provided free of charge to students.

 

High School Healthcare Exposure Camp: July 18-29 (M-F), Daily times 9:00am-2:00pm

Healthcare Exposure Camp Registration Link: https://www.volgistics.com/ex/portal.dll/ap?ap=2028103325

Contact: Tawnie Kennedy, High School Coordinator Email: tkennedy@healthyoregon.com

The Area Health Education Center is hosting a Medical Exploration Camp from July 18-29. This ten-day camp will be held at UCC.This camp is open to high school students from 14-18 years of age. Our program will have the capacity to serve up to 20 youth. We will present career pathway information, provide hands-on skill experiences, and guarantee fun as we explore rural healthcare, various medical careers, and take students to view post-secondary medical education programs. This camp will include a 3-day, 2-night fieldtrip to Portland to explore several Oregon universities, OHSU, and the National College of Natural Medicine. This camp, including the overnight trip, will be provided free of charge to the students.

Bright Works Academy Camp: July 25-August 5 (M-F), Daily times 9:00am – 3:00pm

Bright Works Academy Registration Link: https://www.volgistics.com/ex/portal.dll/ap?ap=270124507

Contact: Lacey Ferguson, Education Coordinator Email: Lferguson@healthyoregon.com

The high school Academy Camp is designed for students who are already participating in the Bright Works Organization after-school programs or classes. This camp will focus on exploring the “soft skills” of the medical field, such as empathy, communication, bedside manner, and teamwork. Additionally, this camp will prepare students for applying to colleges and marketing themselves to universities and programs. Students will participate in group discussions, mock interviews, human resource activities, and team-building activities. This academy will also provide students with a 4 day job-shadow opportunity in the healthcare industry. This camp will include a 3-day, 2-night fieldtrip to Portland to explore OHSU and its programs. This camp, including the overnight trip, will be provided free of charge to the students.

 

 

AHECSW Wraps Up the Healthcare Adventures for 2015-2016 Academic Year

 Wednesday, May 18, 2016


As our academic year winds down, AHECSW is grateful for the wonderful presenters that connected with our youth throughout this year. Our students had support from local and statewide networks of healthcare professionals and pre-professional healthcare students that gave our youth a unique perspective on healthcare careers. Students learned both soft and hard skills this year that will help prepare them to be successful as they continue to work towards becoming future healthcare professionals.

The Winston-Dillard course at Douglas High School had the opportunity to engage with a variety of local presenters, as well as attend trips with our Roseburg Bright Works Oregon Chapter. The Winston-Dillard students had the opportunity to participate in the Healthy Kids Day at the Douglas County YMCA for their team project. During this event they pulled information from the presentations they viewed and incorporated preventative healthcare information that related to careers. This pilot project is being evaluated and the AHECSW staff has exciting plans to expand the in-school programming options in the future. This year they had the opportunity to connect the Umpqua Community College (UCC) Nursing Program, Dr. Randol, DDS’s dental practice, COMP-NW, Oegon State University (OSU), Southern Oregon University (SOU), Umpqua Community Veg Education Group (UC-VEG), and several of CHI Mercy Health’s departments including: Communications, Lab, and Radiology.

The Roseburg Bright Works Oregon Chapter got hands-on this term. They experienced dissections, professional presentations, and had the opportunity to attend two spring trips to view post-secondary healthcare education programs at Oregon State University and Southern Oregon University. Emily Do, a junior at Roseburg High School, reflected on Dr. Edward Junkins presentation on cultural diversity in healthcare that focused on understanding and respecting other cultures. She shared that, “Dr. Junkins was the most memorable guest speaker for me. He practiced soft skills such as observing patient interactions, being courteous and understanding of cultural differences, especially in the medical setting. In the current times, cultural awareness is an important factor in healthcare.” In addition to gaining insight on soft skills necessary to thrive as a future healthcare professional, some students felt like they connected to programs that increased their excitement for their post-secondary education plans. Jerika Whightsil, a sophomore at Roseburg High School stated, “The nursing program (at SOU) seems very exciting, and I learned a lot for my future path in nursing on how to get my RN. My favorite part of our visit would have to be the simulation room with the mannequins.” This year they had the opportunity to connect the UCC Nursing Program, Providence Hospital, COMP-NW, Oregon Office of Rural Health, REACH Air Medical, OSU, SOU, Umpqua Community Veg Education Group, and CHI Mercy Health’s Radiology Department. The students in the program also had the opportunity to receive their healthcare provider level CPR certification.

AHECSW High School Healthcare Interns also had an exciting winter and spring term spending time at ADAPT, the Community Cancer Center, Fire District No. 2, Roseburg Foot and Ankle Specialists, the Oregon Surgery Center (ORSC), and with several departments at CHI Mercy Health including AIM Therapies, Day Surgery, the Emergency Department, Healthy Kids Outreach Program, Lab, and Radiology. The interns have been impacted in a variety of ways this term, Stella Moon shared, “My time interning at Fire District 2 has been phenomenal, and I must say that it has been my most exciting site of my year because of the nature of the job. I go on ride-alongs on ambulances to emergency calls. It really is an exhilarating experience to have for the first time, speeding out on the road with lights and sirens to potentially save someone's life.”While Dylan Smith found his passion through quality mentoring with the ORSC and Day Surgery staff sharing, “He (local surgeon) took time to teach and show me what he was doing. He would always check to make sure I completely understood what he was doing and why he was doing it. Job shadowing in the surgery department impacted my future career interests because before I didn’t have much of an interest in surgery, but now that is my sole interest in medicine.” Three of our interns are seniors that have been accepted into colleges and still intend to pursue pre-health programs. One of our interns will graduate in 2017 with plans to enroll at university and pursue a science-focused degree pathway.

AHECSW also had the opportunity to host an EMS Career Day event at UCC that gave the students a hands-on opportunity to learn from eight paramedic students and from UCC staff. AHECSW had 17 students from all over the county come and attend. This included some students from our Bright Works Oregon Healthcare Team program, some students felt that this event was the highlight of their year. We are excited to continue our work throughout the summer and into the next academic year. Please make sure to connect with our CTE Camp announcements to learn more: http://www.healthyoregon.com/ahec-blog/announcing-cte-summer-camps .

 


Announcing CTE Summer Camps!

 Friday, May 13, 2016

AHECSW is excited to announce our CTE Summer Camp Programs!  CTE stands for Career and Technical Education.This summer, AHECSW is partnering with several community organizations to provide three summer camp experiences for Douglas County Youth.   These camps will provide interactive, hands-on experiences that will allow students to explore career options in the healthcare workforce.  See our summer camp descriptions below to decide which camp is right for you!

AHECSW Summer Camps

“MedChamps” Middle School Camp: June 27-July 1 (M-F), Daily times 9:00am-2:00pm

Contact: Lacey Ferguson, Education Coordinator   Email: Lferguson@healthyoregon.com

MedChamps Registration Link:  https://www.volgistics.com/ex/portal.dll/ap?ap=467874508

The Area Health Education Center is hosting a Middle School Healthcare Exploration Camp. This five-day camp will be held at UCC. This camp is open to middle school students in grades 6th – 8th, ages 11-14. Our program will have the capacity to serve up to 30 youth. We will present career pathway information, provide hands-on skill experiences, and guarantee fun as we explore rural healthcare, various medical careers, and spend a day conducting a mock diagnosis.  This camp will be provided free of charge to students.

 

High School Healthcare Exposure Camp: July 18-29 (M-F), Daily times 9:00am-2:00pm

Contact: Tawnie Kennedy, High School Coordinator Email: tkennedy@healthyoregon.com

Healthcare Exposure Camp Registration Link: https://www.volgistics.com/ex/portal.dll/ap?ap=2028103325  

The Area Health Education Center is hosting a Medical Exploration Camp from July 18-29. This ten-day camp will be held at UCC.This camp is open to high school students from 14-18 years of age. Our program will have the capacity to serve up to 20 youth. We will present career pathway information, provide hands-on skill experiences, and guarantee fun as we explore rural healthcare, various medical careers, and take students to view post-secondary medical education programs. This camp will include a 3-day, 2-night fieldtrip to Portland to explore several Oregon universities, OHSU, and the National College of Natural Medicine. This camp, including the overnight trip, will be provided free of charge to the students.

 

Bright Works Academy Camp: July 25-August 5 (M-F), Daily times 9:00am – 3:00pm

Contact: Lacey Ferguson, Education Coordinator     Email: Lferguson@healthyoregon.com

Bright Works Academy Camp Registration Link: https://www.volgistics.com/ex/portal.dll/ap?ap=270124507

The high school Academy Camp is designed for students who are already participating in the Bright Works Organization after-school programs or classes. This camp will focus on exploring the “soft skills” of the medical field, such as empathy, communication, bedside manner, and teamwork. Additionally, this camp will prepare students for applying to colleges and marketing themselves to universities and programs. Students will participate in group discussions, mock interviews, human resource activities, and team-building activities. This academy will also provide students with a 4 day job-shadow opportunity in the healthcare industry. This camp will include a 3-day, 2-night fieldtrip to Portland to explore OHSU and its programs. This camp, including the overnight trip, will be provided free of charge to the students.


 

 

AHECSW Students Visit Oregon State University

 Friday, April 01, 2016

The Area Health Education Center of Southwest Oregon (AHECSW) had the opportunity to take 22 students from Douglas County to visit Oregon State University (OSU) on February 26, 2016. The trip included students from Douglas High School, Phoenix Charter School, Roseburg High School, and Sutherlin High School. Students had the opportunity to learn about the human body and were able to participate in hands-on activities such as manipulating the cadavers to see various internal and external structures. During these sessions, students had questions about the human body and the anatomy and physiology program at OSU and they were able to have those inquiries addressed by Dr. Devon Quick and her pre-health student teaching interns Bryce, Junior, and Amanda. Noah Stephens, a student from Roseburg High School, said that he gained "A more important understanding of the human body and what it takes to be someone that helps people."  He shared that this experience impacted him because "It just interested me more (in a healthcare career) because of all the things I can learn about the human body."    

During the second part of the trip students were able to meet with pre-health students to learn more about their experiences, this included two pre-dental students (Maria and Eric), and one pre-medical student (Kristin). The students had the opportunity to hear about how the pre-health students got to where they are now, what they are currently doing at OSU, and what they plan to do after they graduate. The pre-health students advised our students on what they would have done differently if they had the chance to do it all over again. Taylor Kuntz, a student from Sutherlin High School, said that the presentation provided her with, "A better understanding of what college is like and it really made me realize that this is what I want to get into. The best part of the presentation was the teacher. She was so helpful and willing to share." While Reena Daly, a student from Roseburg High School, shared some tips that she picked up from the student presentation! She noted that she "Learned a lot about college and how to start off successful by visiting teachers during office hours."

Overall the students had a wonderful experience visiting the OSU campus. Emily Do, a student from Roseburg High School, said "It reinforces my choice to pursue a career as a surgical physician's assistant. The human body is fascinating." AHECSW would like to thank the OSU faculty and students for taking the time to inspire our students and encourage them to pursue the education they will need to be successful as future healthcare providers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

AHECSW ReConnects Post-Secondary Students to Rural Communities

 Thursday, January 14, 2016

AHECSW checked in with our college interns that are participating in our ReConnect program to review their experiences working in a rural community and mentoring high school students.

When reflecting on the role that Duval plays with the program and what he has learned from his experience in his role he shared, "I play a very personal yet professional role with the students in the Bright Works Oregon Healthcare Team Program. As a Pre-Health Advisor, I have to know these students on a personal level and learn a lot about their goals in life to do my job effectively. I am only able to provide guidance and make helpful suggestions to the students when I know what area of healthcare they want to go into and why they want to pursue that area specifically. I also play a much more professional role with students in the program. In order to effectively teach the professional skills that the students need to learn, I have to play the role of an authority figure so that they realize the importance of what I am teaching." 

The experience hasn't only exposed Short and Duval to the clinical side of healthcare in a rural community, but they have been able to connect to the investment that a community must make in their own students. They have been able to witness the altruistic spirit that many local professionals demonstrate through the time they donate to the programs. Short shared his insights on what he has witnessed and learned through his role," Our rural community is entirely dependent upon its own healthcare professionals. The services available in Douglas County and surrounding areas depend upon the available healthcare workforce. If the rural community needs more or different services it is upon that community to establish the necessary services. Obviously a community is dependent upon its healthcare system but a successful community will have a healthcare system that is entrenched in the community. In other words, the healthcare workforce must be invested in its community. Our rural healthcare system has that -- it exists outside of the hospital. Our healthcare professionals are uniquely invested in the welfare of their community. I say this from a personal level, for I have had the privilege to work alongside many of them as they volunteered their time to give presentations, lead dissections, and mentor young students in our community."

When we asked Short and Duval how these experiences were shaping their potential future career pathway and what value they saw in the programs aiding in filling our local rural healthcare workforce pipeline they provided our staff with valuable feedback. Short stated that, " These experiences have reaffirmed my desire to work in the fields of healthcare or public health. The amount of community investment that I have seen from the various healthcare professionals that work with Bright Works Oregon and AHEC points to a level of altruism that I would like to attain! This level of investment has shown me that single individuals can create impactful change within rural communities.The ability to work with my community and its healthcare system have allowed me to appreciate the importance of rural healthcare and its fragility. Communities without proper healthcare or healthcare access will clearly suffer and rural communities continuously show an increasing need for healthcare professionals. Therefore, the rural health pipeline must be filled in order to maintain healthy and successful rural communities."   Duval reinforced Short's sentiments on the impacts of the program and the increased knowledge he has gained by participating in this program by saying, "I feel that the need to fill the rural health pipeline is of great importance. If I did not feel this way, then I would not be planning on working as a healthcare professional in a rural area myself. Rural communities unfortunately sometimes have some of the worst statistics relating to their overall health.If we are to better these types of statistics in rural communities, the deficit of healthcare workers in these areas must be eliminated. With an ever-growing human population, the overall health of these communities is only going to continue to dwindle if changes are not made. Filling the rural health pipeline is imperative to improving the health of communities across Oregon, a mission I personally plan on continuing to aid in the future."

AHECSW feels honored to have these two remarkable young men as our first ReConnect students. We have been able to see the positive impact that they have had on the community and with the students. We hope to continue to support them and offer them resources as they continue working towards their future careers in healthcare field. 

 

AHECSW Student Success

 Friday, January 08, 2016

Do you ever wonder what our students are up to? Where they are now? What they have gained from our programs? AHECSW checked back in with Benjamyn Seamans, a High School Healthcare Intern from the 2014-15 class, to see what track he was on now.

1.What are you now currently planning on doing with your education and what is your major?

"My current educational plans are to become a radiologist; however, I have yet discovered what I would like to major in. Currently, I am a scholars student at Umpqua Community College and my ultimate goal is to finish my prerequisites before attending a university."

2.How do you feel your experiences in the AHECSW program have prepared you for the educational pathway you are on now and for the position that you received at Mercy Medical Center?

"My experiences with AHECSW have allowed me to discover my true interest. For example, I had always thought that I would have an interest within Emergency Medicine (ED); however, after interning within the Emergency Department (ED) I quickly realized that working within the ED would not be enjoyable for me due to my individual personality and preferences. AHECSW helped me confirm my love for Radiology and has allowed me to pursue a career that I truly love and enjoy. Radiology is where my heart is."

3.What do you do for Mercy Medical Center and how do you feel that this position will help advance you in pursuing your future career?

"I am a Radiology Assistant at Mercy Medical Center and believe that my current job will aide to my success due to the fact that I serve as an assistant to Ultrasound, CT, X-ray, Nuclear Medicine, and MRI. Working with all of these modalities provides, in my opinion, a phenomenal source of information and resources in which I can excel from."

When we checked in with Teresa Adams, the Assistant Director of Imaging at Mercy Medical Center, she shared that, "When Ben did his externship with our dept., he was very professional and genuinely interested in what the staff was doing. He asked questions and was engaged, which in turn, makes the techs want to teach. Having Ben in our dept. for 8 weeks, we got to know him and his work ethic, somewhat like an extended interview for us and for the student. His professionalism, personality and knowledge of our dept. he gained from his externship made him the perfect candidate when we had job openings."

These comments and highlights from professionals and students help reinforce the important role that these experiences play in preparing our youth to be college and career ready by helping them make more informed decisions that allow them to visualize themselves in a specific career pathway. The AHECSW staff loves hearing the success stories from past program participants and we look forwarding to seeing what Ben accomplishes in the future!


 

House and Senate Pass the OmniBus Appropriations Package, Including $30.250 million for Nationwide AHEC Program

 Monday, January 04, 2016

Washington, D.C Hill Update

Last week, the National AHEC Organization (NAO) Board President Jacqueline Wynn (NC AHEC Program) and NAO CEO Robert Trachtenberg, conducted Hill visits with Congressional Members in Washington, D.C. in support of AHEC funding for FY2016 and FY2017. Their visits were both extremely well-received by those with whom they met and timely, given that discussion and deliberation regarding the Omnibus Bill were underway. In fact, one of the highlights of their visit was hearing an unnamed source from a very influential congressional office senior staff stating "thank you for coming and keeping us aware of the work across the country, as AHEC is a perfect example of how federal funds work well". It was heartening and an affirmation to hear this positive, effusive feedback.

Late last week, congressional leadership and the administration reached agreement on a comprehensive fiscal year (FY) 2016 omnibus appropriations bill and tax package. The omnibus bill and tax measure were among the few legislative items that Congress “must pass” before adjourning for the year. The House and Senate passed the omnibus appropriations package the morning of December 18th, and the President has signed the bill into law, including $30.250 million for the Area Health Education Center Program, which is level funded from FY 2015.

The omnibus appropriations measure totals nearly $1.1 trillion and includes all twelve annual appropriations bills for FY 2016. With additional spending available to congressional appropriators after the two-year budget deal was completed in November, many medical research and public health programs fare relatively well under the final funding package. Some policy-riders are included in the FY 2016 omnibus package, but the more contentious items were either dropped from the bill or negotiated thoroughly to reach a final deal.

The FY 2016 omnibus includes additional language and guidance through the joint explanatory statements that accompany the bill. Report language included previously in the Committee Reports accompanying the respective FY 2016 House and Senate appropriations bills is binding under the omnibus bill and federal agencies will respond appropriately in the current fiscal year.

The FY 2016 omnibus appropriations package provides the following funding for public health and education agencies:

  • $162.1 billion in discretionary funding for the Labor-Health and Human Services-Education (LHHS) appropriations bill, an increase of $5.4 billion over FY 2015.
  • $727.69 billion for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), an increase of $40.49 billion over FY 2015.
  • $6.38 billion for the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), an increase of $36.77 million over FY 2015.
  • $7.23 billion for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an increase of $307.63 million over FY 2015.
  • $32.08 billion for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), an increase of $2 billion over FY 2015.
  • $3.78 billion for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), an increase of $160.2 million over FY 2015.
  • $334 million for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), a decrease of $29.7 million from FY 2015.
  • $646.65 billion (in mostly mandatory funding) for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), an increase of $35.22 billion over FY 2015.
  • $2.92 billion for the Office of the HHS Secretary, an increase of $413.61 million over FY 2015.
  • $71.7 billion for the Department of Education (DoE), an increase of $1.23 billion over FY 2015.

Of specific interest to our membership, the FY 2016 omnibus appropriations package includes:

Health Resources and Services Administration

  • $1.491 billion for HRSA’s Community Health Centers, level funded from FY 2015.
  • Training for Diversity

  • $21.711 million for Minority Centers of Excellence (COE), level funded from FY 2015
  • $14.189 million for Health Careers Opportunity Program (HCOP), level funded from FY 2015.
  • $38. 924 million for Training in Primary Care Medicine, level funded from FY 2015.
  • $35.873 million for Oral Health Training, an increase of $1.945 over FY 2015.
  • $786.89 million for the Bureau of Healthcare Workforce, an increase of $35.295 million over FY 2015.
  • $30.250 million for the Area Health Education Center Program, level funded from FY 2015

 

 


AHECSW: Talking Health with Architrave

 Tuesday, December 15, 2015

The AHECSW staff members, Chris Guastaferro and Rose Zoellner, recently had the opportunity to sit down with Dan Bain from Architrave Health LLC to discuss AHECSW programs and projects in Douglas County. To listen to the interview visit: http://podcast.541radio.com/roprt3/4830609.mp3