It’s safe to say that it’s been a difficult year! An overhaul to medical education, a raging pandemic that is still not under control, front-line workers and trainees left to fight without crucial tools, assaults on science and public health, a national reckoning for racial injustice, and threats to the very fabric of our democracy. Suffice it to say, we’ve been through a lot. It’s not over yet – but we can now see light at the tunnel.
We’ve witnessed inequity, we’ve observed the cracks in our healthcare infrastructure, we’ve seen our colleagues rise to the challenges before them and go above and beyond to care for patients. We know what needs to change – and with a new Administration and Congress coming in we see opportunity ahead.
Without question health care will be at the forefront when the new Administration and Congress begin in January. Their decisions and actions will impact how we’ll practice throughout our careers.
So what do we do next?
There is an old saying among advocates: Nothing about Us without Us. AMSA believes it’s vital we establish relationships with our incoming leaders now, and help them understand the kind of changes that we believe are needed to grow a high-quality, equitable health care system that is sustainable and affordable for all.
This AMSA Legislative Advocacy gathering on December 10 is where we start. We’ve designed this event to bring us together, to create a space to learn, and to get started on engaging with our elected officials to advocate for the health and well-being of our future patients.
We will be joined by two fantastic experts who will share what they’ve learned from their own experiences in advocacy and activism. Amanda Nguyen, CEO and Founder of Rise (and a 2019 Nobel Peace Prize nominee) will speak about what it’s taken to draft and pass legislation protecting the civil rights of survivors of sexual assault – The Sexual Assault Survivors’ Bill of Rights.
Amanda will be followed by Brian Kaplun, a Health Legislative Correspondent with the US Senate who has experience on the Senate HELP Committee. He’ll provide us with tips and tricks for engaging with lawmakers and making sure our voices are heard.
After we hear from these speakers, we will divide into breakout groups to plan next steps to engage our own Members of Congress. AMSA will provide resources and tools to help develop relationships with our elected officials, connect you with others who are passionate about social change, and help turn your passion into action.