The 41st Summer Institute on Aging will be held June 4-6, 2019 at Erickson Alumni Center in Morgantown, W.Va. The 2019 theme is “What’s Age Got to Do with It? Living Well Across the Lifespan.”

The institute is designed to provide high-quality training in aging services for beginning and experienced social workers, nurses, counselors, supervisors, administrators and professionals in related disciplines. We invite your assistance in creating an informative, creative and stimulating conference. We encourage you to submit proposals for presentations that will help participants build new skills and enhance existing competencies. You may submit a proposal now by completing our online form.

  • Submit proposals online at
  • Topic Areas: Physiological processes and health; psychosocial and mental health; social policy;
    rural aging; ethics; holistic aging; service delivery competencies; care coordination/case
    management; management and leadership; caregiver issues; end-of-life care; abuse/ neglect;
    health literacy; home care technologies; best practices/practice methods or other timely topics
    relevant to the field of aging.Workshop Length/Tracks: 90 minutes and 3 hour sessions. Tracks: Clinical/Medical Practice;
  • Mental Health Practice; Management/Administration/Policy; Cultural Competency/Diversity; or
    Core Practice. Keynote Presentation Length: 1 hour or 90 minutes.
  • Deadline: Proposals must be submitted by January 15, 2019.

Contact:  Jacki  Englehardt104 Knapp Hall  304-293-3280


The Sweet Spot of Patient Engagement: Creating Healthcare Partnerships that Actually Work

Ever wondered how to create programs that really work for patients and families, and do it in a way that staff find rewarding and efficient? Join our live webinar to learn some easy, practical strategies for creating or even re-thinking priorities like shared decision making, medication adherence, patient advisory councils and more. You’ll also learn what effective, modern patient engagement really is and how co-creating care is not only doable, but essential to your success.

Featured Expert: Christine Bechtel is a nationally-known subject matter expert on patient and family engagement. She is known for developing customized plans on a budget.

Patient and Provider Representatives :  You’ll also hear from patient and provider representatives in Delaware, Louisiana, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018 1:30 p.m. ET   I   12:30 p.m. CT


Registration is required, so please register today.


Boone Memorial Hospital wins 2018 Over the Top Hospital Award

On Wednesday, September 26 at the WVHA (West Virginia Hospital Association) Annual Meeting, Boone Memorial Hospital was the recipient of the Over the Top Hospital (under 100 beds) award. This award goes to the hospital with under 100 beds that exceeded its goal by the largest percentage. Boone Memorial Hospital exceeded its goal by 233%.

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Surgeon General Requesting Comments on Rural Social Determinants Perspectives by November 5th

The Office of the Surgeon General has issued a call to action for professionals and organizations on the topic of “Community Health and Prosperity”. The OSG and CDC are inviting recommendations, data, and connections explaining how investing in community health can create prosperity and improve health. Do not miss this opportunity to ensure that rural voices are adequately represented in this conversation. Suggested materials include identifying types of partners and describing important barriers to success. Anyone interested in providing significant and diverse information must send their contributions by November 5, 2018. Information regarding the call to action, submission instructions, and contact information can be found on the official Federal Register Notice.

Nurse Faculty Loan Program (NFLP)

Photo by NURSE Corps

Fiscal Year 2019
Application Due Date:  November 28, 2018

Apply for this grant on

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is accepting applications for fiscal year (FY) 2019 Nurse Faculty Loan Program (NFLP). The purpose of this program is to increase the number of qualified nursing faculty. The program provides funds to accredited schools of nursing so these institutions can offer loans to students in advanced education nursing degree programs. Upon graduation, in exchange for full-time employment as nurse faculty, the program will pay off 85 percent off the faculty member’s loans.

Register-Herald: West Virginia Conference Explores Barriers To Better Health in Rural Communities

Donnie Nunley/FlickrCC

By Wendy Holdren/Beckley Register Herald

Access to care is one of the many health care challenges in West Virginia.

With more than half of the state’s population living in rural areas (51.8 percent), the most frequently discussed element of access is transportation.

West Virginia’s winding, mountainous roads are one barrier, and the costs associated with transportation are another.

But access to care is about much more than travel, as one health care provider outlined Thursday at the 26th Annual West Virginia Rural Health Conference.

Melissa Jensen, a physician assistant practicing in Beckley, says access is also about cultural barriers, too.

“In West Virginia, we put ourselves last,” she said. “There’s a close-knit, family-centric nature in Appalachia.”

As an example, she said a patient may not elect to have a procedure because that would prevent them from caring for an elderly parent. Another patient once told her that she couldn’t follow up with a procedure because she was saving money for her family to go to Disney…

Read the full story at

New Videos Demonstrate Benefits of Community Paramedicine in West Virginia

Photo courtesy Idaho State University –

Community Paramedicine. You’ve heard of it, right?

But do you know exactly what it is, and how it works?

Community Paramedicine is increasingly being recognized as a powerful approach to providing healthcare in rural communities, and a new set of videos released in West Virginia this month aims to explain the benefit of community paramedicine to both patients and healthcare providers.

This form of expanded care – often referred to as mobile integrated healthcare services – is delivered by nationally-registered paramedics who have received additional training. It’s been shown to help lessen unnecessary hospital admissions and emergency department visits while enhancing access to quality care for patients.

The videos were produced by the health system improvement organization Quality Insights, in partnership with the Kanawha County Emergency Ambulance Authority (KCEAA), the Partners in Health Network and Jan Care.

You can watch them now at

“Community paramedicine is filling a gap of needs within our communities,” says Monica Mason, Director of Community Paramedicine at KCEAA. “Once patients are discharged from the hospital, our paramedics go out into the home and visit them to ensure that the plan of care from the hospital is continued to the home until they get back to their doctor’s office for follow-up and further recommendations.”

Mason is one of a growing number of health professionals that believes community paramedicine can have a positive effect on decreasing overall healthcare costs by treating patients before they need to call 9-1-1.

A community paramedic can address both medical and social needs. Community paramedics can provide home safety assessments, triage and referral services, chronic disease management education, support for family caregivers, medication compliance support, vaccinations and more.

Learn more about Quality Insights Community Paramedicine initiative at

ECHO Clinics Provide Endo-Cardio Assistance for Primary Care Providers

Photo: Michela/FlickrCC

Marshall University has partnered with Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes), to assist primary care providers in their treatment of endocrinology and cardiology issues.

The goal of this program is to increase the capacity of primary care providers to safely and effectively treat chronic, common, and complex conditions associated with endocrinology and cardiology issues.

The ECHO clinic is held the first Tuesday of each month at 12 p.m., with alternating endocrinology and cardiology sessions. Participants who join teleECHO clinics receive free CME for the total time spent participating, including didactics and patient-case presentations.

For more information and to register for ECHO clinics, contact Jennifer Plymale at

Project ECHO is a collaborative model of medical education and care management that empowers clinicians everywhere to provide better care to more people, right where they live.

The ECHO model aims to increase access to specialty treatment in rural and underserved areas by providing front-line clinicians with the knowledge and support they need to manage patients with complex conditions such as: hepatitis C, HIV, tuberculosis, chronic pain, endocrinology, behavioral health disorders, and many others.

It does this by engaging clinicians in a continuous learning system and partnering them with specialist mentors at an academic medical center or hub. As the ECHO model expands, it is helping to address some of the healthcare system’s most intractable problems, including inadequate or disparities in access to care, rising costs, systemic inefficiencies, and unequal or slow diffusion of best practices.

To learn more about Project ECHO visit

West Virginia Rural Health Conference Almost Sold Out

Photo: FlickrCC

Only 34 seats remain for the 2018 West Virginia Rural Health Conference – one of the most anticipated gatherings in the region of health professionals, students, advocates and change-makers.

To be held Oct. 17 – 19 at Pipestem Resort State Park, the conference features national and state best practices speakers, provides continuing education to physicians, attorneys, nurses, social workers, pharmacists, dentists, community health educators and others, and is an unparalleled opportunity to network with others interested in improving rural health care in West Virginia.

Hundreds of seats have already been sold, and just a few remain.

Book yours now at

The West Virginia Rural Health Conference continues to build as one of the most significant in its 26 year history, coming at a pivotal time for the state and its people.

With the eyes of the world on how West Virginia will respond to the health challenges currently plaguing the state, this year’s conference is dedicated to unearthing and supporting transformative, game-changing ideas that push the needle on health outcomes.

Learn more, and reserve your spot, at