Why is the #TraineesVote Program Needed?
Healthcare is at a turning point. From the inequities revealed by the Covid-19 pandemic, to the impact of policies such as abortion, gun, and clean-air laws on health, healthcare workers are looking beyond just biomedical knowledge to improve their patients’ lives: they want to impact the policies and community realities that make patients sick. Civic Health Alliance (CHA) established #TraineesVote to address the psychological distress that many healthcare workers feel in response to witnessing human suffering without having ways to change the upstream causes of these conditions. The #TraineesVote program brings civic engagement into residency programs. Civic engagement provides avenues for advocacy and can change the narrative and direction of the moral challenge that physicians experience. Advocacy allows health professionals and healthcare delivery organizations to address the Social and Political Determinants of Health beyond care settings, which may improve their physical health and well-being and improve the lives of their patients. Indeed, Healthy People 2030 highlights that voter participation is associated with better self-reported health outcomes. We believe healthcare workers, and trainees in particular, will experience improved health due to their civic-engagement efforts.