But you must remember, my fellow-citizens, that eternal vigilance by the people is the price of liberty, and that you must pay the price if you wish to secure the blessing. It behooves you, therefore, to be watchful in your States as well as in the Federal Government.
- Andrew Jackson, Farewell Address
March 4, 1837
March 4, 1837
The AANP had its 9th DC Federal Legislative Initiative May 7, 2012. It was attended by nearly 140 NDs and students with 529 visits organized. Our goal is to find legislative allies to work with to improve federal recognition of NDs which will empower our state legislative efforts.
Our legislative asks at the DC FLI were simple and straight forward. We asked legislators to write a letter on our behalf urging Secretary Sebelius, of the Department of Health and Human Services, to include naturopathic physicians in all HHS programs. When NDs are recognized by HHS, jobs for NDs in community health centers, tuition forgiveness and federal programs may begin to open up. We also requested legislators to contact Secretary Shenseki and recommend that NDs be included in the Department of Veterans Affairs programs. We could still use your help. Please take action and contact your Members of Congress today!
The Affordable Care Act enables the “inclusion of licensed naturopathic physicians as full participants in all federal initiatives and programs relating to citizen access to health care is in alignment with the federal government’s goals concerning access to health care.” Implementation of Articles 2706 (non-discrimination), 3502 (medical homes), and 5101 (workforce) would increase choice, potentially leading to citizens choosing less costly interventions and providing greater access to those clinicians capable of providing those interventions. NDs can play an important role in addressing the national shortage of primary care providers which is expected to significantly worsen in the immediate future.
Good work is being done with your membership dollars. We recently saw a great success with the inclusion of NDs in the Indian Health Services Loan Repayment Program.
NDs are a small but effective community with a large mission. The AANP needs more members so that we can do more. Help the naturopathic profession’s progress by asking your colleagues to join our AANP.
If you read this, please drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Michael Cronin, ND