Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Is Your Healthcare Professional Coming to Capitol Hill?

This week’s guest blogger is PHA’s Senior Director of Advocacy and Awareness, Katie Kroner. Katie started working on our PH Professional Network (PHPN) Advocacy Day in 2007 when she had recently begun at PHA as an Advocacy Associate. She makes a strong case for the importance of the PHPN Advocacy Day as an integral part of the PHPN Symposium educational and networking event. PHA works hard to keep costs very low for the Symposium (and free for the Advocacy Day) because we know that education, networking and action lead to better and longer lives for patients. If you’re an NP, PA, RN, RRT, social worker or other medical specialist working in the PH field, consider coming to Advocacy Day and the Symposium this September. If you are a patient, please make sure your medical staff is aware of this opportunity.

PHPN Symposium attendees pose with
Rep. Lois Capps (D-CA) during Advocacy Day 2013.
Are the PH nurses, social workers, respiratory therapists or other allied health professionals in your life registered for the PH Professional Network Advocacy Day on Sept. 17?

If not, they should be. I’ll tell you why, and I hope you’ll share this information with them.

Let me start with the bigger picture. This fall, from Sept. 17-19, PHA will host the PH Professional Network Symposium in Arlington, Va. Symposium is an educational and networking opportunity for allied health professionals who want to learn more about caring for those with pulmonary hypertension. Previous participants have described it as life changing, and many leave with new strategies, ideas and support to make sure the PH patients they see get the best medical care possible.

But wait. There’s more.

Symposium participants can check a box on their registration form to sign up for a FREE advocacy day on Capitol Hill on Thursday, Sept. 17.

When it comes to PH advocacy and the Pulmonary Hypertension Research and Diagnosis Act of 2015, health professionals have a unique and valuable perspective. They can tell not one story about the impact of PH, but hundreds. They can also speak about the importance of National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding for PH research and the work their institution is doing in that area.

One participant described her choice to register for PHPN Advocacy Day this way: It is important for us to support our patients in any way possible. Many are not able to make this trip and it is imperative that we get more knowledge about PAH to the community.

Another said, I’m a nurse! I advocate for my patients every chance I get!

PHA provides training, lunch and transportation between the Symposium hotel and Capitol Hill. Advocates are placed into groups based on their congressional district and accompanied by a PHA staff person or experienced advocate.

PHA knows that when health professionals come to Capitol Hill to speak out on behalf of their patients, Members of Congress listen.

That’s why we do everything we can to make Advocacy Day an easy, fun opportunity. Is your health professional registered?

P.S. Advocacy day participants who want to get a sneak peek at the day can register now for a PHA Online University webinar that answers questions ranging from, “What should I say?” to “What should I wear?”

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