To start the day in D.C. attending the national FQHC Policy and Issues Forum, Beth, Samantha, and Summer met with members of OACHC at Senator Rob Portman’s constituent coffee to speak with the senator about the great work CHCs do for Ohio’s communities. Specifically, Compass had the pleasure of speaking directly with both Senator Portman and his aide Jack Dolan about the importance of integration of behavioral health and primary care with respect to the opioid epidemic facing Southern Ohio, an issue dear to the senator’s heart.
Across town, Todd, underwent NACHC’s “Board Member Boot Camp”. There they discussed areas of finance, quality, and responsibilities related to the oversight of CHCs. He’s eager to share what he learned with the rest of the Board of Directors.
Later in the day, Beth, Samantha, and Summer, re-grouped for the session “Be Ready to Head to the Hill”. There they learned how best to address legislators in one-one-one meetings and how to encourage advocacy efforts while in D.C. and after returning back home to our communities.
The group, as a whole, reconvened for the General Session to hear from NACHC leadership, as well as participate in a round table discussion involving former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Thomas Daschle and Former Utah Governor, Michael Leavitt about the art of speaking with legislatures and an insider’s update on the current political atmosphere and where they believe it is heading.
To end the day, Compass met with FQHC representatives from all over the state of Ohio to discuss the plan for tomorrow’s capitol hill visits. Led by OACHC’s Julie DiRossi King and Teresa Rios-Bishop, the Compass team learned some best practices when interacting with Ohio’s representatives and senators. Armed with this knowledge, Compass looks forward to #stormingthehill today to discuss the importance of such issues such as continued CHC funding, workforce programs, and more.
Tune in later for more updates. As always, don’t forget to sign up as a health care advocate today.