Public Policy and Advocacy
2013 NACHC Policy and Issues (P&I) Forum
This year’s Washington delegation at the P&I Forum was 45 members strong, representing 18 Health Centers. We visited all 12 offices of Washington’s Congressional delegation including personal meetings with Reps. Adam Smith, Suzan DelBene, Doc Hastings, Jamie Herrera-Beutler, Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Denny Heck, Cathy McMorris-Rogers, and Sen. Maria Cantwell.
We advocated primarily for increased federal health center funding for FY2013 and FY2014. As we were making our visits on Capitol Hill, the House passed its Continuing Resolution, which included NACHC’s full $3.1 billion health center appropriations request for FY2013! Our remaining visits including thanking our Members of Congress for supporting the Continuing Resolution and advocating for NACHC’s $3.8 billion target for FY2014 health center appropriations, which includes $95 million for base grant adjustments.
We also took an opportunity to present NACHC awards to our Members of Congress who had been strong supporters of health centers over the year. We were pleased to honor Sen. Murray and Reps. Smith, Reichert, McDermott, Herrera-Beutler, and Larsen.
During the P&I Forum, we also honored a select group of individuals that have worked tirelessly over the year advocating for health centers. We were very pleased that from Washington, the Elizabeth K Cooke Advocacy MVP Award was presented to Barb Malich, CEO of Peninsula Community Health Services; Peg Hopkins, CEO of Community Health Association of Spokane; and Rich Watson, Board Member of Columbia Valley Community Health!
While it will be a tough battle to successfully achieve NACHC’s $3.8 billion target for 2014 health center appropriations, we can be very proud and thankful that Washington’s health centers stepped up to the plate to make a strong advocacy push on Capitol Hill.