It's been a busy year at AHEC West, which launched 2016 with a 40th anniversary commemoration that included the adoption of a new organizational name.
To review all we've done, click here to view the 2016 Annual Report.
Formerly Western Maryland AHEC, the Cumberland-based Maryland Area Health Education Center West became AHEC West to better reflect its service area and distinguish the office from other healthcare entities in the region.
A highlight of the 40th anniversary celebration was an April visit by Jay A. Perman, M.D., President of the University of Maryland, Baltimore, who hosted an Open House at the Cumberland office.
While commemorating its past, AHEC West took a big step toward the future in July when it was named the official health insurance Connector Entity for Western Maryland, providing assistance under the Affordable Care Act to residents of Garrett, Allegany and Washington counties.
August saw AHEC West host U.S. Sen Ben Cardin (D-Md.) for a roundtable discussion on healthcare concerns and needs in Western Maryland.
Recently, AHEC West Director Susan Stewart reached out to staff from both Sen. Cardin's office and the office of newly elected Maryland Sen. Chris Van Hollen to discuss health-related issues. David Stewart, director of the Western Maryland Health Insurance Connector, also traveled to Washington, D.C. to meet in person with Rep. John Delaney for additional discussion on the election and its potential impact on the Affordable Care Act.
Even as it marked 40 years of service, and welcomed the new ACA "Navigators" to its team of dedicated, experienced professionals, AHEC West in 2016 continued to pursue its mission "to improve access to and promote quality in healthcare through educational and other partnerships." AHEC West staff strive to reduce regional health disparities by increasing access to health professional training programs, forging healthcare coalitions, participating in networks addressing regional health concerns, strengthening health-professionals education, and increasing access to oral and behavioral health services. We look forward to continuing that vital work in 2017.