An Interprofessional Approach to Teaching Advocacy Skills: Lessons from an Academic Medical-Legal Partnership

Journal of Legal Medicine, Vol. 40, Issue 2, Pp. 265-278, 2020; DOI No.: 10.1080/01947648.2020.1819485

23 Pages Posted: 11 Dec 2020

See all articles by Vicki W. Girard

Vicki W. Girard

Georgetown University Law Center

Eileen S. Moore

Georgetown University - School of Medicine

Lisa P. Kessler

Health Justice Alliance

Deborah F. Perry

Health Justice Alliance

Yael Cannon

Georgetown University Law Center

Date Written: November 2, 2020

Abstract

Medical students and educators recognize that preparing the next generation of health leaders to address seemingly intractable problems like health disparities should include advocacy training. Opportunities to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to effectively advocate at the policy level to promote systems-, community-, and population-level solutions are a critical component of such training. But formal advocacy training programs that develop and measure such skills are scarce. Even less common are interprofessional advocacy training programs that include legal and policy experts to help medical students learn such skills.

This 2016–2017 pilot study started with a legislative advocacy training program for preclinical medical students that was designed to prepare them to meet with Capitol Hill representatives about a health justice issue. The pilot assessed the impact of adding an interprofessional education (IPE) dimension to the program, which in this case involved engaging law faculty and students to help the medical students understand and navigate the federal legislative process and prepare for their meetings. Results from the pilot suggest that adding law and policy experts to advocacy-focused training programs can improve medical students’ advocacy knowledge and skills and increase their professional identity as advocates.

Keywords: Interprofessional education, advocacy, legislative process, health policy, professional identity

Suggested Citation

Girard, Vicki W. and Moore, Eileen S. and Kessler, Lisa P. and Perry, Deborah F. and Cannon, Yael, An Interprofessional Approach to Teaching Advocacy Skills: Lessons from an Academic Medical-Legal Partnership (November 2, 2020). Journal of Legal Medicine, Vol. 40, Issue 2, Pp. 265-278, 2020; DOI No.: 10.1080/01947648.2020.1819485, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3740020 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3740020

Vicki W. Girard (Contact Author)

Georgetown University Law Center ( email )

600 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
United States

Eileen S. Moore

Georgetown University - School of Medicine ( email )

Medical Dental Building
3900 Reservoir Road, N.W.
Washington, DC 20057-1409
United States

Lisa P. Kessler

Health Justice Alliance ( email )

600 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
United States

Deborah F. Perry

Health Justice Alliance ( email )

600 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
United States

Yael Cannon

Georgetown University Law Center ( email )

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