Medical Student Advocacy Day
2013 Medical Student Advocacy Day
February 10-11, 2013
L'Enfant Plaza Hotel
What is Advocacy Day?
MSS Advocacy Day is an excellent opportunity to increase your awareness of legislative issues affecting medicine, to foster relationships with legislators through political involvement, and to gain real-life education in the practical aspects of physician advocacy.
Advocacy Day activities, which span two days, include interactive educational sessions on effective advocacy and lobbying techniques, briefings on legislative issues currently before Congress, and a full afternoon on Capitol Hill meeting with legislators and their staffs.
Congressional Briefs and Informational Handouts:
- Medical Student Debt Relief Congressional brief
- Graduate Medical Education Congressional brief
- Top Ten Reasons to Protect GME
- Sustainable Growth Rate Informational documents
- Communicating with Congress: This is a pamphlet that instructs students on the various methods of contacting Congress, how to be effective in communication with these leaders, and opportunities to get involved in AMA mechanisms designed to advocate for political action.
- How to Make Your Voice Heard by Congress: Learn about the do's and don'ts of lobbying Congress in this short video.
Who represents you?
In advance of Advocacy Day, find out who represents you in Congress.
Free accommodations for the night of Sunday, Feb. 10 are no longer available. You can book a room at your own expense at:
L'Enfant Plaza Hotel
480 L'Enfant Plaza, SW
Washington, DC 20024
The AMA has secured a discount with United Airlines. To book United Airlines reservations:
- go to www.united.com
- enter origin, destination and travel dates
- Enter ZZU8266314 in Offer Code box
Learn about DC transit options.
Registration is now closed. On-site registration will not be available.
More than 300 medical students from 29 states headed to Capitol Hill on Monday, Feb. 11 to talk with their members of Congress about what needs to be done to protect the future of health care in the United States.
The students held 144 meetings with members of Congress and key staffers. The most pressing of the students’ concerns was preserving graduate medical education funding, which is slated for a 2 percent cut under the federal budget sequester. The number of residency slots also has not kept pace with the increase of U.S. medical students or the demand for care, thanks to a cap that was first set in 1997.
“It’s an important issue for the country because we need more doctors,” said Mark Kashtan, a second-year medical student at the Medical College of Wisconsin. “For us [medical students], it’s the rest of our lives. Since we’re the closest people to it, we need to be the most vocal advocates for it.”
Before discussing this and other issues on Capitol Hill, students received a day of training Sunday, including lobbying practice and tips from experts.
Advocacy Day teaches medical students how to advocate effectively,” said Shannon Brockman, a second-year medical student at the University of Florida College of Medicine. “Students receive instruction on how to talk to congressional aides and on other parts of the lobbying process.”
Since first participating in the event last year, Brockman has been able to build a relationship with her congressman’s office. She hopes the staff will rely on her and other students in the future to better understand some of the critical issues in medicine.
With so many medical students participating in Advocacy Day each year, their efforts leave a lasting impression on Capitol Hill.
“[The event] shows politicians that we care about the future of health care and that we’re willing to fight to ensure that it’s maintained for the betterment of patients,” said Jade Anderson, a second-year medical student at Boston University School of Medicine.
Advocacy Day participants say there are other welcome benefits of the event as well.
“I think most importantly it teaches us about the issues that we should continue to follow, support and share with our classmates,” said Elizabeth Sibrack, a second-year medical student at the East Carolina University Brody School of Medicine.
Ryan Ribiera, a fourth-year medical student at the University of California Davis School of Medicine, appreciates the social aspect of the event. “Advocacy Day lets you become friends with students from around the country,” he said. “It’s another reason I keep coming back after four years.”
Save the date:
2014 Medical Student Advocacy Day
March 16-17, 2014
L'Enfant Plaza Hotel
Over 200 medical students from across the country gathered in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 12-13, 2012, to learn about legislative issues affecting medicine, to foster relationships with legislators through political involvement, and to gain real-life education in the practical aspects of physician advocacy.
Event activities included interactive educational sessions on effective advocacy and lobbying techniques, briefings on legislative issues currently before Congress, and a number of speakers, including Debbie Curtis, Professional Minority Staff Member, House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee, and Rodney Whitlock, Health Policy Director for Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Former Chair and current senior member of the Senate Finance Committee and Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Attendees also spent an afternoon on Capitol Hill, where they met with hundreds of members of Congress and their staffs to discuss pressing issues such as medical student debt,graduate medical education funding, and fixing the sustainable growth rate.
Do you have any further Interest in lobbying/advocacy? The AMA offers great opportunities to gain additional experience in health policy advocacy:
- Government Relations Internship Program - The AMA Government Relations Internship Program (GRIP) provides stipends to assist selected students who are completing summer health policy internships in the Washington, D.C., area. In addition to receiving a stipend, GRIP participants benefit from attendance at weekly seminars conducted at the AMA Washington Office. These seminars are designed to increase the continuity of the internship experience, promote camaraderie among medical students working in health policy, and facilitate continuing education on important political issues.
- View other opportunities