• AAFP Advocacy Focus: Prevention and Public Health

    The Vital Role of Primary Care

    Family physicians are ideally positioned to spearhead the nation's public health efforts. As policymakers seek public health protections and improvements, the Academy engages with legislators and regulators at all levels to provide critical frontline data and perspective on a range of crucial issues.

    Why We Fight

    No specialty treats a broader range of conditions than family physicians, and none offers similarly dynamic longitudinal care to so many Americans. That's why the Academy is at the vanguard of the nation’s public health effort, amplifying the voice of primary care at the policymaking table.

    Behavioral Health

    The Academy is fighting to increase patient access to behavioral health services, improve physician payment for this care, and boost training and education investments for physicians to integrate behavioral health care into their practices.

    Environmental Health

    Family physicians serve as public health advocates and as evidence-driven scientists when working with lawmakers toward sound environmental health policies.

    Health Equity

    The Academy believes that all people should attain the highest level of health. This includes the capacity to heal and to function within the contexts of family, community, and environment.

    Injury Prevention and Violence

    Family physicians can play an important role in teaching communities about safe behaviors while helping to advance policies that promote safety and discourage violence.

    Obesity Prevention and Treatment

    The Academy is committed to working with government agencies to support strategies for reversing the obesity epidemic, a complex and costly public health threat.

    Prescription Drug Issues

    Promoting policies and regulations that mitigate prescription drug abuse while ensuring continued patient access to safe and effective pain management from their primary care physicians is an advocacy priority for the Academy

    Preventive Health

    The Academy is part of an important federal initiative focused on providing evidence-based recommendations to help improve the nation’s health.

    Tobacco and Nicotine Use

    Primary care physicians see firsthand tobacco's heavy toll on U.S. public health. The Academy maintains a constant push for appropriate regulation of this single leading cause of preventable death in America.

    Vaccines and Immunizations

     The Academy supports federal objectives that would increase the accessibility of vaccines and immunizations.

    Women's Health

    Coverage of preventive and wellness services for women is mandated by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, but issues such as chronic conditions and maternal mortality urgently demand state and federal action. The Academy is committed to influencing policy that improves women's health outcomes.