Recently, Kerry Babylon, an adult with pulmonary hypertension (PH) and Silver Spring, Md., PHA support group leader, visited the Rockville, Md., district office of U.S. Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.). During the meeting, Kerry asked that he co-sponsor H.R. 3976, a bill supported by the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) to protect access to charitable assistance. Rep. Raskin agreed to her request.

Members of Congress want to know what is important to their constituents. Face-to-face visits such as Kerry’s with Rep. Raskin are powerful, but they are not the only way to start building a relationship with your senators and representative. PHA’s Advocacy Action Center allows you to personalize messages to your members of Congress about issues that impact the PH community.

The action center is easy to find and use at Start your advocacy efforts today. To send an email, all you need is your address. The action opportunities are updated throughout the year to reflect top-priority issues for the PH community, such as helping lower out-of-pocket costs for PH medications and limiting health insurance plans’ use of step therapy, which requires individuals to fail on a less-expensive therapy before getting the medication their physician prescribed.

Members of Congress want to help, but they receive many requests, so persistence is a key to success.

Thursday, November 8, is PHA’s National PH Day of Action. On this day, occurring during Pulmonary Hypertension Awareness Month, members are asked to use PHA’s Action Center resources to call, write or even visit your representative and senators to educate them about living with PH and request their support for PHA legislative priorities.

For more information about getting involved in PHA’s advocacy network, contact Katie Kroner, PHA senior director, advocacy and treatment access, at gro.noitaicossAHP@ycacovdA or 301-565-3004 x749.