Happy New Year!
Dr. Ramona Seidel, MD, FAAFP
The New Year is a time of resolutions for many. Patients may discuss their ideas about a new weight loss plan, a gym membership, or even doing their colon cancer screening! For our state legislators, it is the beginning of the 90-day legislative session. On January 9th your legislators begin gathering in Annapolis and they need your help. Our well-respected lobbyist, Eric Gally notes, “Almost a third of the General Assembly is new and these lay-person legislators are not experts on health care delivery and financing.”
After the November election, I noticed that I have a connection to each one of my delegates and my state senator. Without violating HIPAA, I cannot reveal those connections, but I’ll bet many of you will be surprised to learn you have connections to your legislators as well. Perhaps they are neighbors, attend your church, have children who attend the same schools as your own. Some may even be your patients! Learn who represents you here. Consider becoming a key contact, especially for the newest “freshman” members of the legislature who according to my lobbyist neighbors will be hungry to meet constituents with expertise they may lack. The MDAFP’s “key contact” program can help guide you in this process.
Finally, please consider joining your State academy at our annual Family Medicine Advocacy Day on Feb. 7th.
Do you still need to make a resolution for 2019? Resolve to become involved in your state legislative process through the MDAFP!