The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics 2019 Advocacy Summit (formerly the Public Policy Workshop) took place July 11-12 in Washington, D.C. Prior to departing to the Summit, all attendees listened to webinars educating on the issues to be discussed with our Members of Congress; The Treat and Reduce Obesity Act (S.595/H.R. 1530) and Expanding Access to Diabetes Self-Management Training Act (S.814/H.R. 1840). Additionally, the Child Nutrition Reauthorization Act was discussed, specifically with Senator Ernst, who sits on a Committee of Jurisdiction. A group of seven Iowa Academy members, including three scholarship recipients, learned about the bills listed above and went to Capital Hill to share our knowledge and encourage Members of Congress to co-sponsor these bills. Currently, Representative Axne has signed on to both bills.
Please take a few moments to look further into these bills and respond to Action Alerts when they are sent to you, so they can finally be passed. The Treat and Reduce Obesity Act was introduced in 2013 and continues to be introduced every 2 years when a new House of Representatives is elected. Let’s work together to get this passed and let our Congress know how important these bills are to the health of Iowans! https://www.eatrightpro.org/advocacy/legislation/all-legislation/treat-and-reduce-obesity-act
If the Advocacy Summit interests you, look for an opportunity to attend next year. Scholarships are offered and more information will be available by Legislative Day, in the winter of 2020.
A huge thank you to the Iowa Academy from the Advocacy Summit attendees: Tina Bauermeister, Lyndi Buckinham-Schutt, Lori D. Winborn, Jen Ransom, Tracy Sauke, Nichole Prelip and Alison St. Germain
The Advocacy Summit attendees in their own words...
I attended the Iowa Public Policy workshop this past winter and was inspired to become more involved with public policy. I was honored to receive a scholarship to attend the 2019 Nutrition and Dietetics Summit in Washington D.C. Before attending these events, I had little knowledge of what public policy and advocating would even mean! Attending these events gave me the skills and confidence to talk to Iowa legislators and representatives about nutrition issues. I also had the opportunity to meet and become friends with other wonderful Iowa dietitians. I am hopeful to become a state policy representative and encourage all Iowa Academy members to become involved in public policy and advocacy.
Dear Iowa Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Members, I wanted to take the time to personally thank you for providing me with the opportunity to attend the 2019 Advocacy Summit in Washington D.C. with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. As a new dietitian ,I felt I learned a lot about why it is so important to advocate for my profession, my patients, and my fellow Iowans. I can truly make their lives happier and healthier. I was able to expand my knowledge on policy and government, which was previously out of my comfort zone. This was such a great opportunity to grow personally and professionally. I enjoyed getting to network with other dietitians in Iowa and getting to know the lovely people I work alongside with in my new profession. I hope to attend the Advocacy Summit again in the future. Thank you, again, for providing me with such a wonderful experience. Sincerely, Nichole Prelip
I want to thank the Iowa Academy for the scholarship allowing me to attend the Advocacy Summit 2019 in Washington DC. I started to gain interest in public policy when I became an active member in the Iowa Academy several years ago and listened to our Legislative Board Chair discuss items she had learned through continuing education. I have also attended some of the legislative days the Iowa Academy leads. My interest became very strong as I learned more about the lack of insurance coverage for individuals with eating disorders. One of my advanced practice areas and passions lies in eating disorder awareness, prevention, treatment and education. Registered Dietitians, have struggled to be part of the healthcare team and move our profession forward; I believe this is directly related to lack of reimbursement for a majority of our services. We will never be recognized as an integral team member if we cannot gain reimbursement for our services. Therefore, I felt like I needed more education and active practice to make a stronger impact; and going to the Advocacy Summit did that! Before we even departed for the summit, we engaged in two webinar trainings that prepared us to interact with the Senators and Congressmen. The training also gave us an overview of the Acts we would be discussing and would be asking to become sponsored. The day on Capitol Hill was amazing. I felt my voice was heard, and I was happy with the networking and communication that occurred between the politicians and the Iowa Academy team of RDs! With this experience, I feel more confident to assist the Iowa Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics with their public policy work at the federal, state, and local levels. Thank you, Alison St. Germain