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Government Relations Academy

Take Your Advocacy to the Next Level

The America’s Essential Hospitals Government Relations Academy elevates the federal advocacy skills of government relations professionals at hospitals with a mission to serve low-income patients and others who face barriers to care. Over nine months, participants will:

  • Expand their knowledge of safety net financing, the 340B Drug Pricing Program, and other key legislative and regulatory issues.
  • Explore effective messaging and communications techniques to support their Hill advocacy.
  • Develop and execute a federal advocacy campaign to achieve a policy victory for their hospital.
  • Build their professional network with government relations peers and seasoned advisers from essential hospitals.

This valuable education series includes:

  • Three highly interactive sessions at the America’s Essential Hospitals spring and post-election Policy Assembly fly-ins, in Washington, D.C.; and at our annual conference, VITAL2024, in San Diego.
  • Supplemental learning activities between sessions, including webinars.
  • Ongoing access to advisers who have decades of experience advocating for essential hospitals and their patients.
  • The option to earn continuing education credits.

Don’t Take Our Word for it — Take Theirs

Past participants explain how the Government Relations Academy can advance your government relations career: 

Program Cost

Tuition is $8,000, which includes:

  • Three in-person sessions for government relations professionals.
  • Access to Washington insiders, including health policy experts, leading lobbyists, and seasoned communications coaches.
  • Curriculum materials.
  • Some meals.
  • Networking events.
  • Distance learning activities between sessions.
  • Complimentary registration for VITAL2024, the association’s annual conference, in San Diego.

Each participant’s sponsoring organization is responsible for travel and lodging expenses.

2024 Session Information


Navigating Washington: Foundations of Essential Hospital Advocacy 

Feb. 26 – 27, 2024 | Washington, D.C.
(Held in conjunction with spring Policy Assembly) 

Participants will deepen their understanding of key legislative and regulatory challenges for essential hospitals. Nationally recognized experts will provide in-depth explanations of essential hospital financing and the mechanisms states use to fund hospitals serving marginalized populations. Policy experts and lobbyists with decades of experience in Washington will reflect on the evolution of effective advocacy at the federal level and provide an advanced overview of the congressional and regulatory processes. Participants will begin an advocacy campaign they will build over the course of the program. With guidance from seasoned experts, they’ll begin defining campaign goals and outlining high-impact communications strategies and an overall execution plan. 


Effective Advocacy Messaging On the Hill and in Your District

June 18 – 19, 2024 | San Diego
(Held in conjunction with VITAL2024) 

This session will build on the foundations built at Session I, with special attention to refining campaign messaging and incorporating effective advocacy tools. Participants will look at effective implementation and execution strategies for their various campaign projects. 


Implementing Your Advocacy Campaign 

Nov. 6 – 7, 2024 | Washington, D.C.

Each participant will present their federal advocacy campaign project to academy peers and advisers, including tools and lessons acquired through the course of the program. The session will emphasize ways to refine the campaign’s execution strategy and will devote significant time to constructive feedback. In addition, national political consultants will share how political action committees can amplify advocacy.


Applications for the 2024 Government Relations Academy are now closed. Please use the form below to submit interest for our next class or other leadership development programs.

Leadership Development Request for Information
Please use your work email address.
Which member do you work for?


Questions about the program?

Contact Julia Grady at

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