Lower Rio Grande Valley - Area Health Education Center
History: Lower Rio Grande Valley Area Health Education Center (LRGV AHEC) began in 1990 as a health care training program for community health centers and evolved to address the community needs.
As a center, LRGV AHEC coordinated with health care professional schools and to connect students with practicums and preceptors in the Rio Grande Valley. Soon after, LRGV AHEC began to offer low cost housing for students coming from other parts of the country for training. LRGV AHEC established a reputation as the organization to seek for community education and dissemination support.
LRGV AHEC leadership helped establish more health care professional programs and schools, which prompted the organization to enhance its role to connect high school and college students to health care professional schools. In 2011, the Rio Grande Valley Area Health Education Center was established as a NOT-FOR-PROFIT organization to allow local community leadership to guide its mission. The housing program continued to grow and supported over 200 students annually until 2016 when the UTRGV School of Medicine was established.
Today, LRGVAHEC continues to work in the community, placing on developing a strong Community Health Worker workforce by training community members to be Promotoras(es) (CHWs) through the South Texas Promotora Institute. We have certified over 20 local Promotoras and are currently collaborating with the UTRGV School Medicine to certify 50 medical students as Promotoras. Furthermore, LRGV AHEC offers over 15 hours of Texas certified continued education units for Promotoras through seminars and workshops.
The center also coordinates with the collaboration of local schools and organizations conferences that offer continued education for all health care professionals.
Mission: Improve the Rio Grande Valley Community health by cultivating assets and decreasing barriers through education, training and dissemination.
Service Area: Cameron, Hidalgo, Starr, and Willacy