​​​Northwest Wisconsin AHEC, Inc. (NWAHEC) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization based in Marengo, Wisconsin.​ Our mission is to improve access to health care in Northwest Wisconsin’s rural and underserved communities, primarily through the education of present and future health care professionals. 


The service area of Northwest Wisconsin AHEC includes 20% of the Wisconsin land area and eleven counties: Ashland, Barron, Bayfield, Burnett, Douglas, Iron, Polk, Rusk, Sawyer, St. Croix and Washburn. Ten of the NWAHEC counties are designated as Mental Health Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA), ten contain Primary Care HPSA’s and nine are classed as Dental HPSA’s. In all but one, the populations exceed the state average of persons aged 65+. Nine of the eleven counties top the state average for people living below the poverty level. Somali immigrants lured by jobs in the poultry industry now comprise 13% of the city of Barron’s population. In addition, the Northwest region is home to four Bands of the Lake Superior Chippewa – Bad River, Lac Courte Oreilles, Red Cliff and St. Croix. 

The Northwest region is served by three Community Health Centers (Superior, Minong/Hayward and Bayfield) with four service delivery sites. It also includes an additional two service delivery sites of the Family Health Center of Marshfield CHC, five rural health clinics and sixteen Critical Access Hospitals. 

Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College, with campuses at Ashland, New Richmond, Rice Lake and Superior, provides opportunities for students to study for a variety of health programs to include, but not limited to, Associate Degree Nursing, Medical Assistant, Nursing Assistant, Emergency Medical Technician, Occupational Therapy Assistant, Dental Assistant, Health Information Technician and Medical Coding. The Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College, UW Barron County 2-year campus, four-year degree granting institutions Northland College and UW Superior are the region’s other educational institutions. The UW System has a BSN-completion program available via distance education. Health education programs are offered by the University of Minnesota-Duluth, Duluth’s St. Scholastica College and Lake Superior College (a two-year community and technical college). Duluth, MN is adjacent to the city of Superior, WI in the northwest corner of the Northwest AHEC region.

Northeastern AHEC, Inc. serves as the fiscal agent for Northwest AHEC.

Click here for more information about Wisconsin's AHEC system and Centers.

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Organizational Information

Founded: 2009
Type: Non-profit 501(c)3​

  • NWAHEC provides services in the following 11 counties: Ashland, Barron, Bayfield, Burnett, Douglas, Iron, Polk, Rusk, Sawyer, St. Croix & Washburn.
  • The national AHEC program was established by the U.S. Congress in 1971 to recruit, train and retain a health professions workforce committed to rural and underserved populations
  • Over 85% of the Nation is served and/or represented by one of the over 300 AHEC program offices or centers.
  • Wisconsin consists of 7 regional centers that each provide services and further the Mission of AHEC.  Each Center is a nonprofit organization with a community board. 
  • 2016 Eugene S. Mayer Program of Excellence Award

Wisconsin AHEC Service Regions

About Northwest Wisconsin AHEC

Connecting Students to Careers, Professionals to Communities, and Communities to Better Health