2023 Leadership Day FAQs

Leadership Day 2023 - May 23-24, 2023

We are excited to welcome you to Washington, DC for Leadership Day 2023, taking place at the Salamander Hotel on May 23-24. This document of frequently asked questions (FAQ) has been developed to help members prepare for the event. This FAQ document will be updated as needed as information becomes available or changes. An overview of the agenda for Leadership Day 2023 can be found here.

Who can participate in Leadership Day?

Leadership Day is an ACP membership benefit and is open only to ACP members residing in the United States; those interested in attending are advised to first reach out to their ACP chapter governor as state chapters typically coordinate their delegations participating in Leadership Day. Registration for Leadership Day is facilitated through a user-friendly online system that identifies all the event sessions. There is a registration fee of $50 per member for the event. Medical students, residents and fellows-in-training are exempt from the fee. 

How do I register for Leadership Day?

ACP members can register for the event online, which is also accessible on the Leadership Day homepage. Please note that space is limited and the registration deadline is Thursday, April 20. Anyone planning to attend Leadership Day must be registered and ACP National does not automatically register its officers or chapter governors for the event.

What information do I need to make hotel reservations at the Salamander?

A room block has been designated for Leadership Day attendees at the Salamander Hotel in Washington, D.C. (formerly the Mandarin Oriental Hotel) at the discounted rate of $415 per night. Hotel reservations can be made online at: ACP Leadership Day 2023. Please ask for “ACP’s Leadership Day” event if you are phoning in your reservation. The deadline to make hotel reservations is Thursday, April 20. If you are unable to acquire a room in our block, please contact Shuan Tomlinson at stomlinson@acponline.org.

Do I have to travel to Washington, D.C. to participate in the event or can I do so virtually from home?

Leadership Day is being planned and executed as an in-person event so participation requires making the trip to our nation’s capital. Day one takes place at the Salamander Hotel and will be dedicated to in-person briefings and training for congressional meetings for attendees. Day two will consist of congressional meetings with lawmakers and their staff, which ACP National will schedule for attendees and chapters. Congressional meetings are anticipated to be in-person, but there may be some virtual meetings, for reasons described below.

Full participation in the program on day one is required for anyone attending Congressional meetings on day two. Congressional meeting participants should ensure they are available for meetings until 5:00 p.m. on May 24.

Will masks be required at the event?

At the time of the event, ACP will follow current guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as well as any requirements in place in the District of Columbia (DC) for mask wearing. DC does not currently have an indoor mask mandate in place. The latest public health guidance from the DC Department of Health can be found here and from the CDC here.  Whether or not to wear a mask is your decision based on your personal risk assessment and level of comfort.

Can I earn CME credit if I participate in Leadership Day?

Yes, ACP typically offers approximately six CME credits over the course of the event. Those who register for Leadership Day and participate in the event can apply online for CME credits and the link to do so will be provided at a later date.

How will congressional meetings work?

For logistical reasons, all congressional meetings will be scheduled for attendees and chapters by ACP National. Although the vast majority of congressional offices are taking in-person meetings, as of February 2023, approximately five percent are only conducting virtual meetings. As a result, some attendees may have a mix of both in-person and virtual meetings. Our scheduler will make every effort to choregraph meeting schedules so attendees can adequately adjust to needing to be physically on Capitol Hill for a meeting and if they also need time to get to a quiet location elsewhere to take a meeting virtually. ACP will have space available for virtual meetings, either at the Salamander Hotel or in ACP’s office building, both of which are in close proximity to congressional offices.

What are the security protocols and procedures in place on Capitol Hill?

Anyone entering a Congressional office building must pass through a security check point with a metal detector and x-ray machine, with rules similar to security screening at airports and other federal buildings. While shoes do not need to be removed, people are encouraged to travel lightly to facilitate a smooth process. The additional security protocols that had been in place during the 117th Congress have been lifted. Once through security screening at the entrance of the House and Senate office buildings, visitors may proceed to their destination without staff escort or pre-registration.

Should chapters limit the size of their delegations coming to Leadership Day?

Chapters can send as many members as they would like to Leadership Day and are encouraged to have constituents from as many of their states’ congressional districts as possible. However, it is also important to note that there is a cap on registration based on hotel ballroom capacity, so chapters are advised to register their delegations early for the event. Our scheduler will do the utmost to ensure constituents meet with their own lawmakers and orchestrate meeting participation appropriately, abiding by any protocols put in place by congressional offices. All ACP members should consult their chapter governors before registering for Leadership Day.

How will I access my congressional meetings schedule?

If registered for the event, at the appropriate time, attendees will receive an email with instructions on how to access your schedule via the AdvocacyDay app. Congressional meeting schedules shown in the app will indicate if meetings are in-person or virtual, with all relevant information neatly contained within the app. Other resources will also be  available within the app, such as electronic issue briefs on ACP’s advocacy priorities, helpful background materials on your lawmakers, as well as other planning materials. Preliminary congressional meeting schedules will be available prior to Leadership Day.

Where can I find Leadership Day materials?

All Leadership Day materials, including leave-behind documents on our policy priorities, will be available in an electronic format and available within an online event HUB that is very user-friendly and easy to navigate. This HUB will be similar to that used for Leadership Day 2022. The HUB will be available soon.

How are Leadership Day policy priorities determined?

Leadership Day advocacy issues are selected based on a variety of factors, including: 1) the legislative environment for that calendar year and which policy issues might be ripe for congressional consideration and action, 2) the extent to which ACP has sufficient policy to inform and justify a given advocacy position, 3) what advocacy priorities had been accomplished the prior year or need further attention in the current year, 4) whether or not ACP has the expertise or ability to effectively influence policy reform on a given issue, and 5) the degree to which a given issue may have bipartisan support within Congress.

ACP strives to select advocacy issues for Leadership Day that are actionable by Congress, represent the consensus views of its membership, have bipartisan appeal, and can advance real reform for the benefit of internal medicine physicians and their patients.

What if a member participating in Leadership Day personally disagrees with one or more of the ACP’s policies selected for advocacy during the event?

With a diverse membership of more than 160,000 internal medicine physician specialists and medical student members, we understand that not every member will agree with every aspect of ACP policy. Yet our policy development process ensures that the diversity of membership views are actively considered.

We strive to select issues for Leadership Day that can enjoy the broadest possible support from our members participating in the event, and from members of Congress of both political parties, but recognize that there may be times when an issue is selected that an ACP member-participant disagrees with. In such situations, we do not expect that a participant will advocate for a position that they can’t support, but we ask that they not advocate against ACP policy in their conversations with lawmakers and staff, since this would hurt ACP’s influence by signaling lack of unity among our membership. In such cases, we recommend that other members from their state to speak in support of ACP’s legislative “asks.” 

Independent of participation in Leadership Day, members who disagree with ACP policy on a given issue can seek to have it changed through resolutions from their chapter to the Board of Governors. Leadership Day itself  is not a policy-making body or event and has no ability to change ACP policies.

What happens if an issue ACP has selected for Leadership Day is one that may not be well-received by some members of Congress because they disagree with ACP’s recommendations? Should it still be brought up in meetings with them? 

Congress, regrettably, is inherently partisan, with Republican and Democratic lawmakers alike often holding opposing views and having a limited willingness to compromise and find common ground. Yet ACP has found that despite such disagreements, we have been successful in advancing our agenda with bipartisan support, on issues ranging from improving access to telehealth services, to addressing health care disparities, to funding primary care workforce programs. We always seek to develop a non-partisan agenda for Leadership Day that will enjoy support across the political aisle. 

Yet there will also be times when an issue is so important to ACP, its members, and patients, that we are obligated to advocate for it during Leadership Day, even though it may be more, or less, well-received by some members of Congress depending on their own partisan identity and ideological orientation. In these, and all, cases, we make our arguments based on ACP policy, evidence, and the experiences of our members, not politics or partisanship. Even if we don’t persuade an individual lawmaker to support our policy on one issue, we anticipate that we will find common ground and secure their support on other Leadership Day issues. We understand if attendees see a benefit in putting more emphasis on the Leadership Day issues that their own legislators may be more amendable to; ACP staff will provide tips the day before the visits on how to handle such situations when they come up.