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

  1. Issue Identification, Research, and Analysis
  2. Lobbying For or Against Legislation
  3. Litigation
  4. Building Relationships with Legislators
  5. All of the Above

The answer is, of course, E. All of the above! Advocacy can be any number of things: something as simple as dropping by a legislator's office to say "hello" or as complex as litigation. Any activity that supports an idea or cause is advocacy, including such things as: lobbying a bill; relationship building; and educating legislators and the public.

By reading through these materials you'll learn the how-tos of grassroots advocacy in greater detail. The lists of activities are not exclusive—get creative and come up with new ideas! As a physician, you are the professional best able to advocate on behalf of health care issues. No one is a better expert on these issues, and legislators need and want to hear what you have to say about them. Because legislators have to deal with massive amounts of legislation on a variety of topics, they can't be experts on everything. A physician advocate can be one of those experts, providing personal insights into the problems that patients and physicians have within the health care system.