12 ways to be a physician advocate

April 07, 2023
Area(s) of Interest: Advocacy 

Critical issues affecting physicians and the practice of medicine are being decided in the legislative arena now. Health care reform, workforce, Medi-Cal and scope of practice are just a few of the vital issues being debated and voted on by elected officials in Sacramento.

The California Medical Association (CMA) has some of the best lobbyists and lawyers in the Capitol, but the most powerful advocate in advancing the cause of physicians and patients is YOU. Below are 12 ways that YOU can be a physician advocate.

  1. Use Your Voice
    Hearing from physicians in their community can make all the difference for a legislator contemplating a complicated health care issue. Share your valuable insight as a constituent on the front lines of medicine.
  2. Participate in Grassroots Campaigns
    Engage with CMA’s grassroots campaigns around specific bills and issues. Our advocacy platform will support you in sending emails directly to your legislators to share your thoughts on key health care issues.
  3. Become a Key Contact for Legislators
    Advocate on behalf of the physician community and your patients by offering your expertise and experience. Work with your county medical society and CMA’s grassroots advocacy team to build personal relationships with your legislators.
  4. Build Relationships with Your Elected Officials
    Meet with your elected officials while they are in their home districts or attend town halls/community events to connect with them. Relationships with elected officials create opportunities for education on health care issues, especially ones relevant to your district and patient base.
  5. Share Your Story
    Receive media training, ghostwriting assistance and other media resources to share your powerful experiences and expertise with the public. Sign up to become a Media Surrogate. Or, share your story on specific issues through our Take Action campaigns on Medi-Cal access to care and prior authorization. Our tools will allow you to immediately tell or write your story, reflecting on issues that inhibited your ability to provide high-quality care.
  6. Follow CMA’s Legislative Hot List
    Follow to receive a summary and the status of CMA-sponsored bills, as well as significant health care legislation. Learn more.
  7. Become a Social Media Ambassador
    Join to receive training, advice and content to help keep your colleagues and other medical professionals informed, connected and engaged online. Sign up to become a Social Media Ambassador.
  8. Contribute to CALPAC
    Support CMA’s political action committee to benefit candidates who share CMA's philosophy and vision. Donate to CALPAC.
  9. Host a Local Fundraiser
    Host a candidate fundraiser or volunteer your time to develop a personal relationship with a sitting legislator. Connect with CMA staff for support on how to best fundraise for a specific candidate or legislator.
  10. Run for Local Office
    CALPAC staff and physician leaders can help you run for office to shape state and local government health care policy.
  11. Attend CMA’s Legislative Advocacy Day
    Join your colleagues in Sacramento for our annual Legislative Advocacy Day to educate legislative leaders as champions for patients and the practice of medicine. Sign up for events.
  12. Join CMA
    For more than 165 years, CMA and its county medical societies have represented California’s physicians as the recognized voice of the medical profession. Together, we are stronger. Join (or renew) today.



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