Noël Holly, a pulmonary hypertension patient, talking about her very first district visit with Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA)
With heart beating a little faster even for a PH patient, I put on my "professional clothes" and, armed with information about PH and the 2013 Pulmonary Hypertension Research and Diagnosis Act (H.R. 2073), I went to see my congressman - Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA-48) (pictured right with Noël) - to tell him about PH and more specifically the new Pulmonary Hypertension Research and Diagnosis Act and to ask him to become a co-sponsor.
Congressman Rohrabacher and his health legislative assistant listened and asked questions. He explained his position of not co-sponsoring any health related issues, and I was able (amazingly enough) to reply with some facts that will perhaps change his mind and to read the material that I brought.
I learned several things from this visit. One: that I, who would have NEVER thought that I could do something like this, actually could! Two: that research and preparation are critical. To that end, I must thank PHA and their website with such excellent tools to help me find information about the bill and more importantly about my congressman and any history that he might have had with previous bills for pulmonary hypertension.
I also am so grateful for Diane Ramirez, who - via Facebook- learned of my planned visit and contacted me to give me her expertise and advice.
I don't know yet if my congressman will actually cosponsor the bill, but I plan on following up, and with persistence will see him do so.
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