Physicians are uniquely suited to advocate for the improvement of the public’s health. Employ Advocacy Resource Center materials on issues—including obesity, protecting the patient-physician relationship, public safety, safe vaccination, tobacco use, women’s reproductive health, wellness and more—to launch a multipronged campaign to improve public health in your state.
In recent years, an alarming number of states have introduced bills to legislate the content of information exchanged between physicians and their patients. While this issue is most evident in bills prohibiting physicians from counseling patients about firearms or restricting abortion, this issue also arises when legislatures create content-specific informed consent or prescribe mandatory palliative care scripts. However, this issue is not about guns or abortion. This is about legislation that encroaches on the patient-physician relationship.
These legislative forays into the practice of medicine not only infringe on physicians’ First Amendment right to free speech, they potentially put physicians in an untenable position of risking disciplinary proceedings, criminal prosecution or abandoning ethical obligations to foster patient autonomy. More important, however, is the real harm that may come to patients if these laws continue to interfere with their safety and access to the most current medical information available.
- Issue Brief: Protecting the Patient-Physician Relationship (PDF)
- Issue Brief: Shackling of Pregnant Prisoners (PDF)
- Issue Brief: Indoor Tanning Restrictions for Minors (PDF)
- Issue Brief: Addressing Childhood Obesity (PDF)
- Issue Brief: Healthy Schools (PDF)
- Model Bill: Prohibit the Criminalization of Health Care Decision-Making (PDF)
- Model Bill: Prohibit the Shackling of Pregnant Prisoners (PDF)
- Model Bill: Prohibit the Sale of Tanning Facility Ultraviolet Rays to Individuals Under 18 Years of Age (PDF)
- Model Bill: Competitive School Food and Beverage Act (PDF)
- Model Bill: Healthy Schools Act (PDF)
- Model Bill: Menu Labeling Act (PDF)
Find out how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the AMA are working to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes.
The AMA offers state advocacy tools on these issues and others. Please contact Annalia Michelman, senior legislative attorney, to discuss this campaign in more detail.