Montana AHEC (Area Health Education Center)
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Montana Area Health Education Center

Goals, Objectives and Activities

The mission of the Montana AHEC is accomplished by pursuing goals, objectives and activities which are common to all AHECs. These are changed and/or modified each year in response to decisions made by the federal granting agency. The following guidelines are used in establishing annual goals, objectives and activities:


The AHEC (Area Health Education Centers) program was developed by Congress in 1971 to recruit, train and retain a health professions workforce committed to underserved populations.  Grants to fund AHECs were always made to the medical school(s) within the states.  The only exception to this has been the University of Washington School of Medicine (UWSM).  In this case, the federal government provided funding to the UWSM to start AHECs in Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and Idaho—all partners in the Regional WWAMI program.

On October 1, 1985, the Montana AHEC was implemented.  The program office for the Montana Area Health Education Center/Office of Rural Health is located on the campus of Montana State University in Bozeman.  In September 2007, under new rules allowing Colleges of Nursing to apply for AHEC grants, the MSU College of Nursing applied and was awarded a grant to establish four regional AHEC offices in Montana in addition to the Bozeman Program Office.  In year one, the South Central Regional office was set up in Dillon under the auspices of the Montana Hospital Association and the Eastern Regional AHEC office was located in Billings at RiverStone Health.  In year two the Western MT Regional AHEC was established in Missoula at the University of Montana. In year three, the North Central Regional AHEC was set up.  Each region will have a director/program manager, establish a regional advisory council and develop healthcare workforce strategies for their region.