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Consortium for Health Education

Who We Are


Improving health of people in Appalachian Ohio

The Consortium for Health Education in Appalachia Ohio is the name of this Area Health Education Center. The mission of CHEAO is to improve the health of people in Appalachian Ohio by fostering academic and community collaboration, emphasizing primary care and focusing on underserved areas. It is one of seven medical colleges in the Ohio Statewide AHEC program and serves 21 Appalachian counties.

CHEAO is governed by a board representing community health agencies and practicing health care professionals. A major goal of CHEAO is to promote collaboration among students in health care professions and the community. Through this partnership, health professionals and allied health members are better prepared to meet the specific needs of those living in rural underserved areas.

We partner with primary care providers, state agencies, clinics, schools and other key stakeholders to promote and support programs that will enhance the health careers workforce and foster better health for southeast Ohio communities.

CHEAO maintains the standards of accreditation established by the American Osteopathic Association and the Midwest Multistate Division.

CHEAO supports the mission of the Heritage College by:

  • Being an approved sponsor of continuing education programs for physicians, nurses and health care professionals in Southeast Ohio
  • Supporting the coordination of clinical training of Heritage College medical students in community hospitals and doctors offices
  • Coordinating health fairs, school visits and campaigns to encourage young people to enter health careers
  • Serving as an American Heart Association Training Center for Athens and surrounding counties

Student Opportunities

Student volunteering at Little People's Hospital

Working in the community

CHEAO supports the coordination of clinical training of Heritage College medical students in community sites and service learning activities for first- and second-year medical students. CHEAO offers students the opportunity to volunteer in clinical and other community health-related experiences. Students participate in service learning activities, provide important health-related services to the community, and in the process, learn skills for becoming a better physician.

Continuing Medical Education

The continuum of education and life-long learning

CHEAO serves the CME office for the college. It supports educational needs of a variety of different health care providers, including the college’s faculty, community physicians in rural and under-served areas of southeast Ohio, alumni, preceptors and clinical faculty in our affiliated hospitals and clinics throughout Ohio.

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Professional Education

American Heart Association Training Center

The Area Health Education Center (AHEC) serves as an American Heart Association Training Center for health care organizations. Adena Health System in Chillicothe, Ohio, OhioHealth O’Bleness Hospital and HAVAR Inc in Athens, The Sech-Kar Company in Logan and Nelsonville, the Vinton County Health Department in McArthur, and the Applied Health Sciences and Wellness Department in the College of Health Sciences and Professions at Ohio University are all satellite agencies that are supported by our AHEC.

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