Patty L. Collins, MAEd, BSN, RN
Director – Nursing Continuing Education/ORPCE
Program Faculty Assistant
The purpose of the Office of Regional Primary Care Education (ORPCE) is to facilitate and enhance high quality, community-based education for health science students from all North Carolina academic centers. Funding for these efforts is provided through the North Carolina AHEC Rural Primary Care Initiative.
ORPCE staff serve as the liaison between community practices and health science schools. We support preceptors and assist students and schools in the following ways:
Health Science Schools
The ORPCE works with university course directors and clinical coordinators to identify teaching sites and coordinate clinical community-based placements within the five-county (Edgecombe, Halifax, Nash, Northampton, and Wilson counties) region of Area L AHEC. The ORPCE attempts to match the requirements of the course and the interests of the students with the appropriate teaching sites.
The ORPCE supports approximately 75 primary care community preceptors through preceptor development activities, facilitating the faculty appointment process, computer technical assistance support, and preceptor payments when available. The office also serves as a preceptor advocate in local and statewide discussions.
Students are supported through site identification, information technology assistance, local educational seminars and workshops, and student housing. Area L AHEC maintains 8 apartments in Rocky Mount and Wilson to serve the needs of students rotating within the region.
Clinical Experiences Available in the Area L AHEC Region
Area L AHEC offers a wide variety of rural clinical training sites for family medicine, internal medicine, pediatric, obstetrics/gynecology, nurse practitioner, physician assistant, and PharmD students. Interdisciplinary training experiences are also available where students from a variety of health disciplines can integrate experiential and theoretical learning in rural interdisciplinary health care.