The ACS can help
The College offers several ways for Fellows to get
involved with grassroots advocacy at the state and federal levels. First, the Leadership & Advocacy Summit
is an efficient way to learn about federal health care
issues and techniques to engage your personal legislators. (See sidebar, page 27, for information about the
2016 Leadership & Advocacy Summit.)
The ACS Chapter Lobby Day Grant Program offers
Fellows an opportunity to expand advocacy efforts at
the state level. More than 20 chapters have hosted a
state lobby day since the program’s inception in 2010.
(See sidebar, this page, for more information.)
Another way to engage with legislators is to arrange,
either individually or with the assistance of ACS staff,
participation in in-district meetings. When legislators are in their home districts, they are often more
accessible than when Congress is in session. Surgeon
advocates might also consider attending or hosting a
E-mails and phone calls are another important way
to inform lawmakers about a surgery-related topic.
A valuable tool that the College offers is Surgeons-
Voice ( surgeonsvoice.org). This website provides direct
communication with your legislators’ offices, summa-ries of current legislative issues, and a portal to the ACS
Professional Association Political Action Committee
(ACSPA-SurgeonsPAC). Simply log on with your ACS
ID and last name to access these tools.
Advocacy encompasses many possibilities and activities. To be an advocate, one need not be a spokesperson
or policy leader. Your role can range from writing a
letter to your member of Congress, to attending the
Leadership & Advocacy Summit, or to meeting with
lawmakers while they are in their district offices. What
matters is that you find a way to be involved—as a
teacher and as a leader. ♦
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Health advocate definition and description. Available at:
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6. The American Board of Pediatrics. The Pediatrics
Milestone Project. Available at: www.acgme.
PediatricsMilestones.pdf. Accessed January 8, 2016.
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study. Available at: www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/
advocacy/ state-advocacy-arc.page. Accessed January 18,
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to connect. Bull Am Coll Surg. 2015;100( 7):80-82. Available
summit-why-are-you-here-to-lead-to-advocate-and-to-connect/. Accessed January 29, 2016.
9. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. CMS’
program history. Available at: www.cms.gov/
html?redirect=/History/. Accessed January 7, 2016.
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Accessed January 7, 2016.
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III RC. The evolution of advocacy and orthopaedic
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13. U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ways
and Means. Health Subcommittee. Available at: http://
Accessed December 18, 2015.
ACS CHAPTER LOBBY DAY GRANT PROGRAM
The ACS Chapter Lobby Day Grant Program provides ACS chapters with support—
up to $5,000 in grants for participating chapters—to engage members in grassroots
advocacy initiatives. The following states will host lobby days in 2016: Alaska, Alabama,
California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, New
York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin.