Using the Toolkit: Hammering Home the Message to #SaveAHRQ


Thursday, September 17, 2015, 3:30-4:30 p.m. ET

Overview: This summer, the House and Senate Appropriations Committees each passed spending bills for fiscal year 2016 that contained several problematic provisions for the health research and public health communities. Chief among the concerning provisions were cuts made to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, or AHRQ. The agency was eliminated entirely in the House bill and its base budget was reduced by 35 percent in the Senate bill. 

As the professional society for health services research and the home of the Friends of AHRQ, AcademyHealth and its members are vested in AHRQ's survival. 

During this webinar, AcademyHealth's advocacy team unveiled a #SaveAHRQ toolkit that can be used by individuals and organizations alike in preparation for the congressional budget conference this fall, when the House and Senate will convene to work through the differences in their respective budgets before reaching a unified "concurrent budget resolution" that each chamber will then adopt. 

AcademyHealth staff walked attendees through the components of the toolkit, discussed how they can be utilized by individuals and organizations in the coming months, and provided an overview of a fall momentum strategy to keep this important conversation going and stress to our elected officials why AHRQ is so critical for health and health care.

Learning Objectives: The webinar provided:

  • A better understanding of the fiscal year 2016 appropriations budget cycle, and what it means for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). 
  • An overview of the various advocacy tools that can be used in the #SaveAHRQ campaign.
  • Information on how the components of AcademyHealth's advocacy toolkit can be utilized by stakeholders in their respective advocacy efforts.

Course Level: 101 (Introductory)

Faculty: Lisa Simpson M.B., B.Ch., M.P.H., FAAP, AcademyHealth; Kristin Rosengren, AcademyHealth; Emily Holubowich, M.P.P., CRD Associates 

Faculty Bios:

Simpson Webinar  

Lisa Simpson, M.B., B.Ch., M.P.H, FAAP, is the President and Chief Executive Officer of AcademyHealth. A nationally recognized health policy researcher and pediatrician, she is a passionate advocate for the translation of research into policy and practice. Her research focuses on improving the performance of the health care system and includes studies of the quality and safety of care, health and health care disparities and the health policy and system response to childhood obesity. Dr. Simpson has published over 75 articles and commentaries in peer reviewed journals.

Before joining AcademyHealth, Dr. Simpson was director of the Child Policy Research Center at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and professor of pediatrics in the Department of Pediatrics, University of Cincinnati, and she served as the Deputy Director of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality from 1996 to 2002. 

Kristin Rosengren Headshot  

Kristin Rosengren is Vice President, Strategic Communications at AcademyHealth, leading the organization's public relations, marketing and advocacy efforts. A member of AcademyHealth's leadership team, she guides the development of messaging and outreach to support the organization's mission, build relationships with members, partners and other stakeholders, and increase the awareness and perceived value of health services research. She also serves as co-director of the AcademyHealth Translation and Dissemination Institute, which seeks, tests, and promotes new and innovative approaches to moving knowledge into action. 


Emily Holubowich, MPP, is Senior Vice President at CRD Associates. She has 15 years of experience in health and fiscal policy, government relations, strategic communications, and coalition management. Ms. Holubowich represents clients, including AcademyHealth, the Coalition for Health Funding, and NAPHSIS.

Ms. Holubowich is frequently sought out by the media for her expertise on public health and fiscal policy, appearing on MSNBC and National Public Radio and quoted in USA Today, Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, Politico, CNN Money, Huffington Post, and other beltway publications. She is also called upon by universities and national organizations to lecture on the policy environment and best practices in strategic communications and advocacy. Before joining CRD Associates, she served as the director of government relations for AcademyHealth and a senior health policy analyst with the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO).