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Maryland Area Health Education Centers (AHEC)

What is the AHEC Program?


The AHEC Program began in the early 1970s when many areas of the United States were faced with severe shortages of health care professionals, including doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and public health workers. Recommendations issued by the Carnegie Commission addressed how colleges and universities could help ease these shortages.

One of the Commission’s recommendations led to the development of Area Health Education Centers (known as AHECs). In 1972, Congress awarded funds to establish AHEC programs in 11 states. Today, there are 56 programs and over 235 centers in almost every state and the District of Columbia.

Map of Centers

Maryland Area Health Education Center (MAHEC) Program

The MAHEC Program and its first center, Western Maryland Area Health Education Center (WMAHEC), were established in 1976. The Eastern Shore Area Health Education Center (ESAHEC) was the second center established in 1995 and the third was the Baltimore Area Health Education Center (BAHEC) in 2002.

The Mission of the Maryland AHEC is to improve the health status of Marylanders through community educational partnerships that foster a commitment to enhancing healthcare access in the rural and urban underserved areas of the state.


  • Aug. 08, 2016: Congressman Cummings praises participants in the UMB Summer BioScience Internship Program
  • Jun 09, 2016: University of Maryland Program Encourages Medical Students to Consider Primary Care (Baltimore Sun)
  • May 12, 2016: A Win for Primary Care in Maryland

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Message from the Director

AHEC Program Director, Dr. Richard Colgan welcomes visitors to the new and improved AHEC website.
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