AHEC Mission

Our Vision & Mission

Improve health and wellness by collaboratively developing and providing educational programs to enhance community health and broaden the distribution of a diverse health workforce, particularly for rural and underserved Pennsylvanians. 

To fulfill this mission, Pennsylvania AHEC provides information, inspiration, assistance, and support to:

  • High school and college students interested in and pursuing health and dental careers
  • Health professional students exploring primary care and the care of vulnerable populations
  • Health and dental professionals seeking opportunities in rural and urban underserved Pennsylvania
  • Primary care providers and other health professionals needing continuing education
  • Community health workers requiring training and continuing education for state certification
  • Individuals pursuing second careers in health care

We collaborate with teachers, faculty, guidance counselors, and advisors. We educate patients, professionals, and students about managing diseases like diabetes, addressing mental health concerns, stopping tobacco use, and tackling the challenges facing those living in poverty. We connect health systems, rural health clinics, and community health centers with students and professionals prepared to meet the needs of all Pennsylvanians.


Quality, equitable health, and wellness for all Pennsylvanians.

  • Strengthen collaborative relationships across the regional AHECs to enhance our ability to plan and coordinate creative activities, share quality information, and leverage resources
  • Create health promotion initiatives and continuing professional education programs that fully engage the interdisciplinary health care community – students, educators, researchers, and providers – in the planning, implementation, and evaluation. Gain the trust and active participation of a cross-section of health care consumers, especially from underserved areas of the state in this effort.
  • Develop and maintain fully functioning partnerships with government agencies, educational institutions, and community organizations in order to secure fiscal resources and political support for the AHEC agenda.
  • Disseminate what we have learned widely, using both community-based and professional forums, measure the results of our programs through the use of clear objectives, sound methodology, and reliable data.
  • Promote the design, implementation, and evaluation of technology that can foster connectivity among consumers, academicians, and health care practitioners.

The AHEC mission is to enhance access to high-quality health care through partnerships to ultimately improve the distribution, diversity, and supply of health professionals, and to facilitate educational opportunities for health professionals and the community.

  • Facilitate the recruitment and retention of primary care providers in underserved communities through education and training programs.
  • Develop an information and communication network to provide consultation, technical assistance, education, and other professional support for community-based primary care practitioners.
  • Increase the number of individuals from minority and underserved communities and populations who enter primary care and allied health professions.
  • Evaluate and assess the public health needs of communities within and among the regions and provide innovative, multi-disciplinary responses to those needs.

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