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Rural Programs

Opportunities to elevate underserved communities.

The WWAMI AHEC is an integral part of the larger University of Washington School of Medicine WWAMI program. WWAMI AHEC shares the mission and resources with the WWAMI program to improve the quality and distribution of all health professionals in our mostly rural, five-state region. In 2018, WWAMI AHEC locations are AHEC of Western Washington in Bellingham, WA; Eastern Washington AHEC in Spokane, WA; Southwest Idaho AHEC in Boise, ID; Northern Idaho AHEC in Moscow, ID; and Southeast Idaho AHEC in Pocatello, ID. 

Administrated by UWSOM’s Office of Rural Programs, the new WWAMI AHEC Scholars Program is a two-year, inter-professional program for healthcare profession students across Washington state and Idaho. Medical students, and TRUST students in particular, are invited to join this diverse cohort of health profession students as a complementary program to their primary medical school program(s). AHEC Scholars participate in clinical training in rural or urban underserved sites and receive didactics that address the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) core topic areas, including inter-professional education, practice transformation, behavioral health integration, social determinants of health, cultural humility and current and emerging topics.


TRUST seeks to provide a continuous connection between underserved communities, medical education and health professionals in our region. The goal is to create a full-circle community of medical students by guiding them through a special curriculum that connects underserved communities in Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and Idaho to UWSOM and its network of affiliated residency programs in an effort to help meet the workforce needs of the region. 


The Rural Underserved Opportunities Program (RUOP) is a four-week, elective immersion experience in community medicine for students during the summer block of the Foundations Phase of the curriculum.  During this rotation students live in rural or urban underserved communities throughout Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana, and Idaho (WWAMI). They work side-by-side with local physicians providing health care to rural and underserved populations.  

RUOP iii-3 is a six-week elective course in community health that coincides with the RUOP clinical experience. This course fulfills UW SOM’s Independent Investigative Inquiry requirement.


The WRITE Program is a longitudinally integrated clerkship developed by the University of Washington School of Medicine as a means to help medical students learn and understand the practice of rural medicine. The success of this unique program is due to the integration of community involvement, continuity of experience and a proven curriculum. The impetus for creating WRITE was to expand rural training options at the UW; develop additional training experiences in the WWAMI states, including rural areas; foster the primary care mission of UWSOM; and provide more physicians for rural practice in the Pacific Northwest.


Explore the UW School of Medicine's Rural Programs.