Webinar: Advocacy in 2021: Something Old, Something New

a desk with a legal book open and a notebook underneath it, with a pen on the notebook. Text reads, 'Advocacy in 2021: Something Old, Something New'
  • Date Recorded: February 2, 2021
  • Presenters: Andrew Kesser
  • CE: eligible for 1 CE
  • Length: a little under 57 minutes
  • Price: free (CE access is $25, and free to BHAP members)

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As 2020 ends and 2021 begins, we find ourselves in quite a unique period.

A presidential transition- which only occurs once or twice a decade to begin with- presents us with some new advocacy opportunities. Yet the current environment is unprecedented, as we are experiencing a hostile transition of power for the first time in history. The delayed transition will play havoc with our expectations, and almost certainly delay our progress. Add to this a public health pandemic that still dominates every aspect of policy being produced in Washington, and you have a recipe for a very unpredictable and challenging year ahead.

COVID-19 certainly has an impact on SUD treatment, and in the short term, this will be our priority. The impact of COVID on the services provided by our members is undeniable. Whether the issue is the increase in need for our services, a transition to telehealth, or the need for vaccines and PPE in our facilities, the SUD community has concerns that must be heard. Of course, with or without COVID-19, BHAP has its advocacy priorities. We will continue to address issues such as workforce, reimbursement, parity, and Medicaid. The overdose epidemic has not gone away due to the COVID pandemic. Quite the opposite, it has been exacerbated. The need of the public for the services we provide are greater than ever.

The opportunities before us with a new administration can be exciting, but we must be careful not to make any assumptions. The Biden White House is going to be met with challenges that have never been experienced by an incoming administration, so it is not clear where SUDs fall on their list of priorities. We know that President-elect Biden has an affinity for this work, based on his time in the senate. But the direction his administration takes will depend heavily on the personnel he appoints to key positions within the government. We will explore possible priorities, and what our expectations should be as the White House works with a narrowly, yet sharply, divided Congress.

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Continuing Education Information

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This webinar will provide 1 CEU.

CEs will only be available free to those who attend the live webinar. Attendance will be monitored.

In order to complete the CE requirements, attendees must complete the test that will be provided during the event.


Andrew Kessler

Andrew Kessler

Andrew Kessler, JD, is founder and principal of Slingshot Solutions LLC, a consulting firm that specializes in behavioral health policy. His clients, past and present, include the International Certification and Reciprocity Consortium (IC&RC), the California Consortium of Addiction Programs & Professionals (CCAPP), and Faces and Voices of Recovery.

With 20 years of policy experience and over a decade in behavioral health, Kessler is a fixture in circles that advocate for substance abuse treatment, prevention, and research. He collaborates frequently with congressional offices, the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and other federal actors.

Kessler has written legislation and report language adopted by both the House and Senate Appropriations Committees, and has presented orally before such bodies as the Scientific Management Review Board, the National Conference on Addictive Disorders, and the College on Problems of Drug Dependence.


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Webinar: Advocacy in 2021: Something Old, Something New

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