Since its inception in 1991, SWLAHEC has administered over $52.8 million in grants and contracts.
The mission of the Southwest Louisiana Area Health Education Center (SWLAHEC) is to improve health status through access to information, education and health services. SWLAHEC seeks to improve health through numerous programs focusing on two main areas: 1) recruiting and educating health professionals and 2) educating the public on how to live healthier lives.
The vision of Southwest Louisiana Area Health Education Center is to be a premier community-based agency made up of diverse, knowledgeable and accountable employees and volunteers working together to achieve a common mission by providing creative solutions to health challenges.
SWLAHEC is an independent nonprofit organization and a member of the national network of Area Health Education Centers (AHECs) operating in 48 states. AHECs are administered by the U. S. Health Resources and Services Administration’s Bureau of Health Professions. The AHEC network was launched in 1972 by federal legislation in response to the Carnegie Report on the workforce, which found severe shortages of health professionals existing nationwide.
The LSU School of Medicine in New Orleans received a grant from the national AHEC program in 1989 to establish the Louisiana AHEC system. SWLAHEC was formed in 1991 to fill a recognized need for better coordination of regional health and education programs to benefit the residents of southwest Louisiana. The other regions of the state are serviced by the Southeast, Central and North Louisiana AHECs.
SWLAHEC has a 26-year history of administering numerous grants and contracts to coordinate, implement, and evaluate community-based health and education programs for targeted populations. Our current services include programs on career and professional education, health interventions, preventive health, and public health support.