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Advocacy, Politics and the 2012 Elections

January 23, 2012 4 comments

I’ve been in Florida for the past week, working, advocating, feeling my jaw clench and my back go up each time I’ve seen or heard a commercial or watched a newscast that focuses on one of the Republican primary candidates.  (As an aside – it’s not because they are Republican – it’s because the commercials are so nasty, denigrating, and insulting or because the candidates or their henchmen say such nasty, denigrating, insulting things about each other.)

Florida, of course, is the next primary state, to where all the candidates will  rush once the results are in from South Carolina. Even though they aren’t here yet, they have already ramped up the vitriol.  It’s not pretty. And to my ears, it’s abusive.

Since this is my first AdvoConnection blog post written during a presidential campaign, I thought it might be wise to raise the issue of the profession of health advocacy and the discussion of politics.

I have a one word piece of advice for combining the two:  DON’T.

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This post has moved.  Find it in its new location at:

http://advoconnectionblog.com/2012/01/23/advocacy-politics-and-the-2012-elections/

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Putting WOM to Work for You

November 27, 2011 Leave a comment

One of our AdvoConnection members got in touch after a talk he gave to his local Rotary Club.  He was disappointed in the turn-out and wondered whether all his effort was worth it.  After our brief email conversation, it seemed that sharing some of the important points might be a good idea since you might run into some of his same issues.

Those issues are based on presentation and expectations.  So let’s take a look.

Public Speaking, whether there are 5, 50, 500 or 5000 people in attendance is a great form of WOM – that is, word of mouth marketing.  In fact, there is no more powerful form of marketing than word-of-mouth. And perhaps the best part – not only is it free (the cost comes in time and effort, but not money) – but sometimes, when you get good enough at it, you might be paid to do public speaking, too. Public speaking may not be word-of-mouth in the traditional sense (someone else’s word from someone else’s mouth) but it’s WOM nonetheless.

Here’s why WOM is so powerful for patient and health advocates:  it creates a sense of trust.  People hear you speak, they see who you are as a person, they observe how well you think on your feet, and they decide for themselves what your capabilities might be.  That sense of trust is huge for our patient-clients who are putting their lives, and their money, in our hands.

Our member’s concern was that he had been promised many more attendees would be there. He had worked with the Rotary Club president on the topic, “ObamaCare” and was told there would be 15 – 18 people in attendance.  Only 10 people showed up.

When he told me the title of his talk, I cringed, Read more…

Health Advocacy and Healthcare Reform

March 28, 2011 2 comments

If you know and understand healthcare reform in the United States, please raise your hand and shout “I do!”

<<hmm… I hear crickets…>>

That’s right.  There is no one who understands it, including Kathleen Sebelius (Secretary of Health and Human Services), or Donald Berwick (nominated to lead CMS).  It’s too complex, too long and frankly – just plain daunting.

But we are healthcare professionals.  We make our livings understanding healthcare systems.  So if we are confused by the complexity of healthcare reform, just imagine how patients and caregivers feel!  Add to that all the changes going on at the state level regarding healthcare, including home care and nursing homes, and what do we have?

AN OPPORTUNITY!!

Read more…