The MassAHEC Network (Area Health Education Center) is dedicated to eliminating health disparities by ensuring that all residents have access to quality health care delivered by a culturally competent, skilled worforce that reflects the diversity of the population served. This is accomplished through six regional offices (Boston, Brockton, Lawrence, Pittsfield, Springfield, and Worcester) and offices at Boston University and UMass Medical schools.
Specific programs focus on:
- Health career pipelines
MassAHEC focuses on recruiting more minority and disadvantaged youth into health careers, because research and experience indicate they will be more likely to care for the medically underserved.
- Primary care careers
MassAHEC-sponsored learning opportunities bring health disparities to life for students, who see first-hand the needs of vulnerable populations.
- Improving access to health care services
By training community health workers and medical interpreters, providing health literacy awareness and clear language communication training, and translating written documents, MassAHEC improves the skills and knowledge of the workforce and facilitates increased understanding between patients and providers.
- Professional development programs
MassAHEC's annual training calendars offer continuing education opportunities for health care professionals on a wide range of topics including primary care, cultural competency, chronic disease, and health disparities. CEU approval is also available for the full range of health care professionals for training programs sponsored by other organizations.
- Workforce assessment and planning
MassAHEC works in collaboration with state agencies and organizations on policy and planning efforts to ensure that the commonwealth has a strong primary care workforce.
MassAHEC is part of the National AHEC Organization and has been hosted by UMass Medical School since 1978. The MassAHEC Network is funded by the Bureau of Health Professions in the Health Resources and Services Administration, the University of Massachusetts Medical School, grants and private foundations, and state support for specific projects.