- Get educated about MOMS 21. Learn how Maximizing Optimal Maternity Services for the 21st Century (MOMS21, HR 5807) will improve maternity outcomes, increase access to care, and curb rising health care costs. Also be sure to visit the new ACNM MOMS 21 Web page.
- Check if your representative is a cosponsor (search here to find out). We ALREADY have the support of 30 US Representatives! If yours is a cosponsor, thank them for their support.
- Call your US Representative and Senators in their DC office. Find out who your legislators are here, and ask them to cosponsor MOMs 21. Use these talking points as a guide.
- Email or fax a letter (view samples here) to your Representative’s and Senators’ Health Legislative Aide in the DC office. Attach the Dear Colleague Letter and the bill info sheet.
- Spice it up. Consider including some of these supporting documents: Essential Facts about Midwives, Nurse-Midwifery in 2008, Primary Care Providers, and Evidence-based Maternity Care.
- Meet your legislators in their local offices or invite them to your practice. Congress will recess August 9 through September 12. To find their local offices click “contact” at this link. Request a visit using this Senate letter or this Representative letter.
- Capture your visit with a photograph. Have your fellow midwives sign the photo, and return it as a thank you gift. Submit the lobby day evaluation form to let us know how it went.
- Don’t sweat the details. When you talk with your legislators, their health care staff, and the media, discuss the women you serve and obstacles to better care. Should they have questions regarding the legislation, they can contact ACNM Federal Lobbyist Patrick Cooney at 202-347-0034 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Involve the Media. Send the MOMS 21 Press Release out, and call your local media. ACNM members, don’t forget to let the Ambassador Toolkit help you out. Let midwives in your community know you reached out, and see if others have personal contacts in the media.
- Keep the relationship going! Once you have established a connection with the Health Legislative Aide, maintain it throughout the year with continued communication. Successful advocacy is all about the relationship!
Monday, August 9, 2010
Kathryn Kravetz Carr, CNM, Chair, ACNM GAC