West Virginia has pioneered new approaches to educating medical and other health professions students in rural settings through the West Virginia Rural Health Education Partnership (WVRHEP). The WVRHEP was designed to increase the recruitment and retention of health care providers in rural areas by requiring students in all health disciplines to complete rural rotations. The program has been recognized nationally for its achievements. Since 2001, newly formed Area Health Education Centers (AHECs) have increased opportunities for health professions education.
To support these efforts, state and federal financial incentives are coordinated through the WVRHEP Recruitment and Retention Committee and the Bureau for Public Health. Eligibility requirements, benefits, obligations, and application procedures for these programs vary, but a common requirement is the practice location must be in an underserved area. Individuals may receive incentives from several state-funded programs and can serve their practice obligations concurrently.
West Virginia SEARCH Program
The West Virginia SEARCH Program seeks to address shortages of health care professionals in underserved communities of West Virginia by providing learning experiences in those communities.
This statewide program awards stipends to medical, dental, and mental health students and residents who show strong potential for future practice in rural, underserved areas of West Virginia.
WV SEARCH awards stipends regardless of a recipient’s university affiliation. All student applicants must be considered full time and in good standing with their respective programs.
WV SEARCH applications are initiated by students and by health care provider organizations that meet the HPSA location requirement.
This funding opportunity requires applicants to hold U.S. Citizenship.
WVU Charleston Division
3110 MacCorkle Ave Suite B102
Charleston, WV 25304-1210