The Northeast Kentucky Area Health Education Center (NE KY AHEC) is one of eight regional centers in Kentucky, and more than 235 nationwide, with a mission of enhancing access to quality healthcare services in rural and medically underserved areas. This is accomplished through a variety of health careers pipeline initiatives striving to improve the supply and distribution of healthcare professionals via community and academic partnerships. These pipeline initiatives include health careers promotion, support for health professions students, and the provision of continuing- and community-level education.
The NE KY AHEC has been contributing to improved access and higher-quality healthcare in northeastern Kentucky for more than 30 years. In conjunction with its host institution, St. Claire Regional Medical Center (SCR), and educational affiliate, the University of Kentucky (UK), the NE KY AHEC began initial formation in 1983, with an office based in Morehead. At the time, the NE KY AHEC was one of the first regional offices to be developed in the state. Today, the NE KY AHEC continues to grow through its continued partnership with SCR and UK, as well as collaborations with other state, regional and local health-focused organizations.
The NE KY AHEC serves a 17-county region of northeast Kentucky, running along the I-64 corridor. The region, which sits in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, is medically underserved, comparatively unhealthy and socioeconomically disadvantaged. Most of the NE KY AHEC's service counties are federally designated as medically underserved areas or medically underserved populations. Our service counties are: Bath, Boyd, Carter, Clark, Elliott, Fleming, Greenup, Lawrence, Lewis, Mason, Menifee, Montgomery, Morgan, Nicholas, Powell, Robertson and Rowan.
In collaboration with a variety of partners, the NE KY AHEC has assisted in providing the northeast Kentucky region with unique health careers educational opportunities including the UK's Rural Physician Leadership Program, the UK's Physician Assistant satellite campus, four "hub" sites for University of Pikeville Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine students and the Murray State University Nurse Anesthetist satellite campus.