Over 300 You’re the Cure advocates and staff from across the country convened in Washington D.C. on Monday and Tuesday of this week for the 2017 Federal Lobby Day – including a large contingent from the Carolinas.
It’s always my pleasure to empower you to act on AHA policy priorities with your lawmakers. Together we have made real change happen.
This week in Washington, it was no different.
We spent two days on Capitol Hill. Monday focused on issues trainings and how to have effective legislative meetings. Tuesday, we spent the day on Capitol Hill meeting our members of Congress and their staff.
We discussed four policy issues in our meetings. We urged our lawmakers to:
1. Make Heart and stroke research a national priority by increasing the National Institutes of Health budget by 6% or $2 Billion for 2018.
2. Expand access to stroke telemedicine by co-sponsoring the Furthering Access to Telestroke (F.A.S.T.) Act.
3. Increase access to cardiac rehabilitation by co-sponsoring H.R. 1155/SB 1361.
4. Finally, we expressed our concerns about access health care coverage and urged lawmakers to oppose the American Health Care Act and any Senate substitute that reduces access to affordable and adequate healthcare coverage.
You’re the Cure members lent their expertise to help other advocates sharpen their advocacy skills. Yolanda Dickerson from North Carolina shared her advice on connecting your personal story to multiple issues.
Dr. Anil Yallapragada from South Carolina participated in an Issues Briefing panel discussion with AHA President-elect Dr. John Warner, Dr. Ivor Benjamin, Chair of the AHA National Research Committee, and Dr. Lynne Braun, Member of the National AHA Advocacy Coordinating Committee.
All our advocates used their passion and first-hand experience to connect with lawmakers and personalize the policy issues.
It would be impossible to pinpoint the singular best moment of our time together in Washington, D.C. One thing, for sure, is that we are proud of all our advocates that joined us and the great job they did representing our You’re the Cure team! The 2017 You’re the Cure on the Hill was a huge success!
To our entire You’re the Cure team, your passion, your time, your investment in our issues makes us successful. Thank you!
You, as always, are my Why.