Oncology nurses advocate for their patients every day, and it’s easy to see firsthand the difference it can have in those patients’ and families’ lives. But there’s a way to make an even larger impact by using those same advocacy skills at the local, state, or even national level—potentially changing thousands or even millions of lives of patients, survivors, and families across the United States.

The Fourth Annual ONS Capitol Hill Days, held this year September 22–24, 2019, is an education and advocacy conference that prepares oncology nurses to meet and discuss important health policy issues with elected officials from their state and district. Any member from an ONS chapter can apply for this opportunity to join more than 100 oncology nurses in the health policy arena. It’s an opportunity to represent oncology nursing at the highest levels of government, ensuring that patient and provider concerns are heard.

Over the course of three days, ONS members learn about the issues and carrying important advocacy messages to their elected officials. Nurses are briefed by policy experts, government officials, nurse leaders, and the ONS advocacy and health policy team on the current political environment and topics, including palliative care, oral drug parity, and care planning. In addition, "inside-the-Beltway" pundits provide insight on issues such as access to opioids, drug cost legislation, Medicare reform, tobacco cessation, workforce safety, and federal funding for research.

Join the 2019 Capitol Hill Days

To be considered for Capitol Hill Days, all applicants are required to provide:

  • A letter of interest stating previous advocacy experience
  • A curricula vitae or resume
  • A letter of support from a chapter leader

All three items are required to submit an ONS Hill Days application, so it’s important to prepare these documents ahead of time. 

ONS provides hotel accommodations and food during event times. Chapters are responsible for transportation costs to and from Washington, DC. Both returning and new participants are welcome—anyone who want to help ONS educate decision makers on the role of the oncology nurse in health care.

Reach out to Alec Stone, ONS’s Director of Public Affairs, with any questions at astone@ons.org.