American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

Advocate at Home Program

2018 Advocate at Home Program Recap

The American College of Surgeons (ACS) Division of Advocacy and Health Policy’s (DAHP) Advocate at Home Program—designed for all surgeon advocates—was established to expand Fellow engagement within the College’s grassroots advocacy efforts while demonstrating the importance of meeting with elected officials to raise the profile of ACS policy priorities and effect change. Subsequently, surgeons have the ability to develop relationships with policymakers and offer to serve as trusted advisors while continuing to advocate for meaningful change at home.

A special thanks to all our 2018 At Home participants! Since the program launched in August, 30 Fellows from 25 Congressional districts across the country expressed interest in participating. By mid-September, 15 Fellows met with 10 members of Congress at home to educate them about important issues facing surgeons and patients, including:

  • Reducing administrative burdens through the College’s Stop Overregulating My OR (SOMO) initiative
  • Reauthorization of the Pandemic and All Hazards Preparedness Act (PAHPA)
  • ACS efforts to address the opioid epidemic

For many members, these were familiar federal legislative priorities; an extension of those covered at the 2018 ACS Leadership & Advocacy Summit. Additionally, the information shared regarding PAHPA reauthorization and opioids are timely issues that Congress is expected to address prior to the midterm elections.

DAHP staff makes these meetings as easy as possible, by providing all of the resources to schedule, prepare for, and facilitate an in-district meeting. Although meeting assessments have been extremely positive, stating that duration, substance, and policymaker interaction was exceptional, ensuring this program’s continued success and expansion is a DAHP staff priority.

Participate in the 2019 Advocate At Home Program

We encourage all Fellows to watch for next year’s Advocate at Home Program registration information, scheduled to launch in May 2019.

In-District Meetings and Events

Meeting with your elected officials is a powerful way to raise the profile of issues and effect change. While members of Congress and their staff are well-versed on many issues, surgeons are the experts on surgical issues. 

Senators and representatives return to their home states and districts during Congressional work periods. In-district meetings are a great opportunity to meet with policymakers nearby and assist policymakers in gauging what is important to their constituents. 

Be an advocate in your home districtPlanning a successful in-district meeting is easier than you think! The purpose of this program is to:

  • Utilize ACS DAHP staff to help schedule, prepare for, and facilitate an in-district meeting or event that will leave your lawmaker interested in learning more about important issues facing surgeons and patients
  • Validate your expertise to your representative or senators
  • Develop relationships with policymakers and offer to serve as a trusted resource to your member of Congress and his or her staff
  • Continue to advocate for meaningful change at home

Resources

Audience

This program is designed for all surgeon advocates, including but not limited to:

  • Health Policy Advisory Council (HPAC) members
  • Health policy and advocacy committee and group members
  • Legislative committee members

#advocateathome

Make sure to tweet us @SurgeonsVoice and @AmCollSurgeons using #advocateathome!

Take Action

During the remainder of the 115th Congress and beyond, the College has several legislative priorities that have the potential to be considered. Take action and send a pre-drafted letter to your members of Congress.

Act now