Area Health Education Center  

Join our mission to improve health equity in New Mexico. Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) are a federally funded national network of 235 centers in almost every state. The New Mexico AHEC aims to create a diverse healthcare workforce and provide healthcare in rural and unserved communities.

At the New Mexico AHEC, our goal is to:

  • Develop the health professional pipeline for underserved communities by engaging with young people in schools and through special events,
  • Encourage health professions students to work in underserved communities by providing financial support for clinical rotations in rural and underserved settings,
  • Support health professional retention and culturally sensitive, regionally appropriate health care through continuing education.

Contact us to get involved.

Fill Health Professional Shortages

New Mexico is suffering from shortages of health professionals; through AHEC, we want to educate future providers to fill these gaps.

All counties in New Mexico but one have at least one Health Professions Shortage Area (HPSA).  HPSAs include lack of adequate staffing in primary care, dental care, mental health, emergency medical personnel and more.

Rural, geographically remote Hispanic and Native communities have the most significant HPSAs in the nation. Students who participate in programs that encourage rural and underserved community involvement are more likely to eventually work in these communities.

If you are a current undergraduate student in a health professions program, learn about the NM AHEC Scholars Program to see how you can serve New Mexicans.

AHEC Goals and Strategies

  • Increase the ethnic diversity of health care professionals in New Mexico
  • Encourage professional practice in underserved communities
  • Encourage students to explore careers in health care and provide them with health career information
  • Provide support for health professions students to gain clinical and life experiences in rural New Mexico
  • Provide continuing education to health professions residents and practitioners to improve the quality of healthcare services to New Mexicans
1. Develop the Health Professionals Pipeline for Underserved Communities
NM AHEC engages youth in a variety of health career awareness and mentoring activities offered in public schools and through special events.
2. Encourage Health Professional Students to Work in Underserved Communities
NM AHEC provides financial support for students from multiple health professional training programs so that they can complete clinical rotations in rural and underserved communities throughout the state. This requires close collaboration with colleges, universities and a wide variety of clinical training sites.

3. Support Health Professional Retention and Improve Competency to Provide Culturally Sensitive and Regionally Appropriate Healthcare
NM AHEC offers continuing education to health providers on a variety of culturally sensitive and regionally relevant topics. Collaboration with the NM Department of Health, as well as other private organizations and foundations, facilitates implementation of this training.
  • Increase access to health care in rural and underserved communities by increasing training and employment in health care fields. 
  • Capture and maintain interest about health profession careers, especially among students from minority, rural and disadvantaged backgrounds.
  • Support rural clinical rotations for health professional training programs throughout the state by maintaining existing and establishing new collaborations with colleges, universities and a wide variety of clinical training sites.
  • Offer continuing education for health professionals on a variety of state and local relevant topics.
  • Collaborate with other New Mexico health professionals to develop practices that promote culturally sensitive, regionally appropriate health care.
  • Improve access to quality health care through partnerships with educational institutions, community stakeholders, private organizations and state and local governments.

Find Us

NM AHEC includes the program office at the University of New Mexico and three centers throughout the state.

New Mexico AHEC
University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center
MSC09 5040, 1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131
Phone: 505.272.9761
Director: Helene Silverblatt, MD
Program Specialist: Maria Ward

Montañas del Norte AHEC (MdN AHEC)       
366 Luna Drive, Las Vegas, NM 87701
Phone: 505.454.2583
Director: Elaine Luna, LISW 

Southern AHEC (SoAHEC)
205 W Boutz, Building 8 Suite 2, Las Cruces, NM 88005
SW Center for Health Innovations
Phone: 575.597.0036


Workforce Development Programs
SW Center for Health Innovations
301 W. College Avenue, Ste 11, Silver City, NM 88061
Phone: 575.597.0030
Director: Baudelia Salgado (Bala)