The ACR is accepting applications for this year’s Advocates for Arthritis event, which will be held virtually on Sept. 27–28. This annual event brings together patients and rheumatology professionals to advocate for our subspecialty on Capitol Hill. Applications are also open for the Advocacy 101 program, which provides advocacy training for ACR/ARP members.
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Apply today to join your colleagues and patients in webinars and breakout sessions on Monday, Sept. 27, and advocate directly to your lawmakers via videoconference on Tuesday, Sept. 28.
What is Advocates for Arthritis?
The Advocates for Arthritis event consists of meetings with federal lawmakers and their staffs about important legislative issues facing rheumatology patients and providers. You, your colleagues and patients from your state will have the opportunity to share stories on why legislative action is needed.
Who is invited to attend?
All ACR and ARP members are encouraged to apply, and it is free to attend. Additionally, we hope you share this opportunity with your patients. Tell them about the power of patient voices and encourage them to advocate on these important issues.
Do I need any advocacy experience?
No! You already have all the experience you need by being able to share personal stories of how certain laws affect you and your patients. You will also be conducting these meetings alongside others as part of a small team, so there is no reason to be nervous. ACR staff and volunteer leaders will also offer webinars in advance to help you prepare and feel more comfortable acting as an advocate. Topics will include the basics of Capitol Hill, best practices for meetings, education on legislative issues and much more.
What legislative issues will be discussed?
Top priorities for this year’s Advocates for Arthritis will include prior authorization reform, drug pricing priorities and supporting the medical workforce. You can see an overview of all the ACR’s advocacy priorities here.
What does the schedule look like?
- Monday, Sept. 27: Webinars for all attendees will provide meeting logistics, background on the legislative issues and an opportunity for you to meet your “team.” There will also be an optional training. Specific times will be announced closer to the event, but plan for 2:30–5:30 p.m. EDT.
- Tuesday, Sept. 28: Meet throughout the day with your colleagues and lawmakers. Your individual schedule will be finalized in the days before the event and is subject to change. Plan to be available for the entire day.
This sounds great—how do I sign up?
You can apply here. We need accurate contact information to schedule your meetings, so be sure to fill everything in correctly. The ACR will be notifying applicants of their status by July 31.