Empowering Health through Voting: Our Partnership with Vot-ER
The right to be heard is not only a democratic principle, but also a matter of health. The American Medical Association even recognizes the act of voting as a social determinant of health.
When people participate in the democratic process, they help shape policies that impact access to healthcare, education, and economic opportunities.
In contrast, disenfranchised communities can experience disparities in health outcomes, underscoring the importance of civic participation in creating a healthier and more equitable society for all.
Healthcare professionals are uniquely placed to play an important role in engaging individuals in the voting process, regardless of political preferences.
“We can be political without being partisan,” says Dan Kendall, founder and managing editor of Health Podcast Network. “Informing people about voter rights and engaging them in the procedures for participating in elections can help activate more citizens in the democratic process.”
That’s exactly why we at Health Podcast Network have partnered with Vot-ER.
Five things you should know about Vot-ER:
- It is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization working to integrate civic engagement into healthcare
- It serves every corner of the healthcare system—from private practitioners to medical schools to hospitals
- The work is driven by a community of healthcare professionals and students, as well as a tech-savvy and engaging team
- Since 2019, they’ve expanded Vot-ER tools and resources to over 700 hospitals, health centers, and clinics across the country
- They have over 350 national partners, including the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Nurses Association
By connecting healthcare institutions and providers with the tools, training, and community to register colleagues and patients to vote, Vot-ER is promoting civic engagement and creating healthier communities across the United States.
“Research demonstrates a relationship between voting and health at the global, national, state, local, and individual level,” the executive director of Vot-ER, Aliya Bhatia, said. “Locally-elected officials help ensure we have access to clean water, grocery stores, and green space in our neighborhood – all social determinants of health.”
What you can do with Vot-ER:
- Get a free voter registration badge and lanyard
- Check your registration
- Register to vote
- Request a ballot
- Learn about voting in your state
Vot-ER has a lot of resources for Civic Health month in August as well.
With the election upcoming in November 2024, now is the time to start planning by checking that you are registered to vote, and get involved with Vot-ER to ensure your community is one where everyone has the ability to use their voice to vote on what matters most to them. Visit Vot-ER.org to get started today.