Helen Petroff, MD, attended her first CAFP All Members Advocacy Meeting (AMAM) in March 2019. Dr. Petroff was always interested in advocacy and Medicare for All, and after attending the AMAM, the meeting inspired her to become more engaged. When Dr. Petroff realized that none of her fellow family physicians from Ventura County were in attendance, she was eager to increase engagement.
Dr. Petroff returned home from AMAM and looked up her local chapter on the CAFP website, where she found her friend Jim Hornstein, MD, was listed as chapter president. Dr. Petroff reached out to Dr. Hornstein, and he informed her the chapter was not active, but if she was interested in getting it going again, he would meet with her to discuss. Together, they came up with a plan to activate the chapter with the support of CAFP. CAFP sent an email invitation to the chapter membership. A few members responded and gathered over dinner. The group established a steering committee and eventually began the process of electing a chapter board, where Dr. Petroff was elected president.
A few months later, the Ventura Chapter hosted a successful dinner and CME event about prescribing opioids with local superstar, Tipu Khan, MD. In early 2020, Ventura Chapter held a well-attended general meeting, where bylaws and officers were elected. Within a year of attending the AMAM and being motivated to make a change, Dr. Petroff led and energized the members to collaborate and write their first-ever chapter resolution. Their resolution was in favor of single-payer health insurance, which they submitted to the 2020 AMAM.
While COVID-19 has taken over so many of our members’ lives, the Ventura Chapter continues to meet virtually every three months. They also plan to submit a resolution or two for the 2021 AMAM.
Dr. Petroff and the Ventura Chapter are determined to continue engagement with the CAFP, even in the most extraordinary times. She is optimistic getting members involved will be easier once they can meet in person again. The plan is to hold more activities, such as member dinners, family events, and continue their involvement at the state level through participation in the AMAM.
If you are interested in reengaging your chapter, reach out to CAFP at email@example.com.