Several from GIM marched in support of Medicaid expansion

Thursday, February 14, 2019

The temperature was in the low 40's when four clinicians from the GIM "DOC" clinic donned white coats over warm clothing to join the 13th Annual Moral March on Raleigh. They met, some with their children, on downtown Fayetteville Street last Saturday, February 9, 2019, to march to the NC State Capitol. This was a rally sponsored by the state NAACP chapter to raise awareness about racial and social injustice.

Healthcare access and affordability

Along with the scores of others who marched, the four from GIM — Drs. Alex Cho, Larry Greenblatt, and Azalea Kim (pictured right), also Julia Gamble, FNP (pictured below), from the Duke Outpatient Clinic — were especially making known their support for healthcare access and affordability. Their hope was to make an impression on lawmakers.

Why march?

They would tell you that marching for a cause raises awareness and gives visibility to some things that might otherwise go unnoticed. They recognized the opportunity to reach the general public with an issue and reach the media. As a benefit, these participants no doubt, just by being together, received a greater sense of purpose, unity, and optimism. They would encourage everyone “to get involved". If anything, their marching and our media coverage may, in fact, motivate others to be politically active.

This is not the first time GIM faculty members have advocated publicly for better healthcare access and health policy. Here are other examples of recent activity:

  • Nov’ 2018, residents in the ACLT program led by Dr. Daniella Zipkin (GIM member), met with the NC Secretary of HHS about Medicaid expansion. ACLT is the “Advocacy in Clinical Leadership Track”, an elective for 2nd and 3rd year medicine residents interested in health policy.
  • Nov’ 2018, a Health Affairs blog, co-authors Greenblatt and Kim, recommended new performance measures to improve the quality of opioid prescriptions.