Evelyn Huang, MD | Health Policy Academy Fellow
What did you gain from your year-long experience as a Health Policy Academy Fellow?
So much! This was a “crash course” in all aspects of health policy — from monthly meetings/lectures on interesting health policy topics to learning how to write a resolution and advocate properly and effectively. We were also able to attend national meetings and meet health policy leaders from across the country. I have learned what it takes to become a leader in our field and how to make the world of emergency medicine better for us and for our patients.
Why would you encourage others to apply for Health Policy Academy
“Health policy” is such a broad topic, and there are so many branches and ways to get involved. This fellowship helps you to break it down and to learn more about the many different aspects of heath policy. The fellowship is also exciting because you can shape it to your career goals/interests. If you are passionate about a certain topic, then you can write resolutions based on that topic and request a lecture to learn more.
What specific policy (or policies) do you hope to focus on, and advocate for, as a direct result of your involvement in Health Policy Academy? In other words, what issues affecting the realm of EM are important to you?
I hope to continue our focus on mental health! While I do think that most institutions and physicians are well aware of this problem, now is time to identify actions that we can take to combat barriers to mental health treatment. While I was able to pass an EMRA resolution regarding mental health questions in state medical licensures, I hope to one day make this a national policy. I want to get rid of any invasive mental health questions on all state licenses, except for questions that relate to current impairment or inability to perform the duties of a physician. It is my hope that this can act as one less barrier to getting help when we need it.
I would also love to continue to improve education on health policy. Like I said before, health policy is an incredibly broad topic with a lot of nuances. For example, I think that all residents and physicians should know the basics of health insurance and healthcare costs, because it directly relates to our patient care. I recently started a health policy curriculum in my residency, and I would love to see this type of education brought to all programs.