Mikulski and Norton are Congressional Champions
Mike Jawer, AANP Director of Government & Public Affairs
Monday, May 12, 2014
by: Mike Jawer, AANP Director of Government & Public Affairs

Section: State and Federal Advocacy

In conjunction with the DC FLI, AANP presented awards to two Congressional Champions – Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-Maryland) and Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (Del-DC) – who have introduced resolutions to establish Naturopathic Medicine Week two years running.
While Senator Mikulski was unable to accept her award at the Whole Health Reception, she had the following letter delivered to AANP’s leadership:

Dear Dr. Pournadeali and Representatives from The American Association of Naturopathic Physicians:
Thank you so much for inviting me to your annual legislation conference and for selecting me to receive your 2014 Congressional Champion Award.  I wish I could have been there in person to meet with you, receive the award, and talk about the importance of raising awareness about prevention and integrative approaches to health, but a busy Appropriations Committee schedule has prevented my attendance.
You should know that I am so proud of the work you do every single day.  As you are well aware, more than seventy-five percent of U.S. health care costs are due to preventable chronic illnesses.  Seventy-five percent!  As you also know, naturopathic medicine can help reduce this number significantly.  By focusing on holistic patient-centered care, the prevention of chronic illnesses, and early intervention in the treatment of chronic illness, naturopathic medicine is able to improve health outcomes and reduce overall health costs. 
That’s why last year, with your input, support and collaboration, I introduced S.Res. 221.  This Resolution, which passed the Senate unanimously, established the first-ever Naturopathic Medicine Week in October of 2013.  We wanted to raise awareness of the important work done by naturopathic doctors and I believe we did just that!  It was my honor to introduce the Resolution again this year – S. Res. 420 - and I am so proud that Senator Tom Harkin agreed to cosponsor.  He is a dear friend, trusted colleague, and long-time supporter of integrative health and naturopathic doctors. 
I’d be remiss not to mention the amazing work being done by the Maryland Association of Naturopathic Physicians.  Just recently, because of their hard work and dedication, the state of Maryland passed a law to license naturopathic physicians in our state.  It’s about time!
Thank you again for selecting me to receive this award and I look forward to working with you all in the years to come.
Barbara A. Mikulski
United States Senator

NDs can be proud to have advocates such as Senator Mikulski and Congresswoman Norton in our court.  AANP members have developed these relationships over many years – based as much on the legislators’ personal experience with naturopathic medicine as with their support in principle.  If you know Members of Congress who can be cultivated as supporters, or if you have friends, patients or family members who know these legislators, please contact the AANP staff.  Perhaps they will become AANP Congressional Champions in due course!
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