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Advocacy Opportunities

The Need for Advocacy

The most common concern we hear from U.S. families living with a craniofacial difference is that their health insurance plans have denied their benefits regarding necessary medical and dental care.

We are working to put an end to this by advocating to Congress, in partnership with over 60 other organizations, to get the Ensuring Lasting Smiles Act (ELSA) signed into law.

The Ensuring Lasting Smiles Act/ELSA Bill (H.R. 1916/S. 754)

If ELSA gets signed in to law, it would guarantee ongoing health insurance coverage for medical, dental, and orthodontic support from birth into adulthood for people impacted by congenital anomalies – including craniofacial differences. This game-changing legislation would ensure that members of the craniofacial community would receive the coverage they need – and deserve – for necessary treatments.

Status of ELSA In Congress

On April 4th , 2022, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to pass the Ensuring Lasting Smiles Act with a supermajority vote!

The next step now is for ELSA to be brought for a vote on the floor of the U.S. Senate. There is still much work to be done, and we need to get it done this year – during the 117th Congress. If ELSA does not pass the Senate and get signed into law before January 3rd , 2023, we will have to start all over again from the beginning when the 118th Congress begins.

What You Can Do To Help

(1) Please take a moment to send a pre-written email to your Senators, urging them to support ELSA.

If you personalize these pre-written emails with your own anecdotes and stories, they will be even more memorable and impactful when your Senators decide whether or not to support this bill.

NOTE: When you enter your home address on the form, it will automatically direct your email
to your two U.S. Senators.

 


Kristin Pfeifauf explains the critical need of access to surgeries and treatments for those with congenital anomalies.

(2) Post about the #EnsuringLastingSmiles Act on social media and tag your Senators, asking them to make ELSA a priority.


(3) Tell your friends and family about how important ELSA is to your family and ask them to reach out to their Senators to support this bill.


(4) Join the Ensuring Lasting Smiles Act Advocates” Facebook group. It’s a great way to connect with other ELSA advocates! This private group provides a forum where you can ask questions, share successes and challenges, and receive regular updates on the status of ELSA. It also provides helpful suggestions for what you can do to advocate for ELSA.

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