Reflection #1: Uyen Truong, PharmD Candidate 2019
Today, Michael Cervantes, a representative of Congresswoman Norma Torres, came by to speak to us about the legislative process and how we can get involved. He began by briefly explaining how our government works. He explained how the three branches (legislative, executive, and judicial) each contribute to making a bill into a law. He then explained the process of a bill becoming law. All this information seems irrelevant to pharmacy, but he emphasized that in order to advocate for pharmacy laws, we had to know the legislative process.
After a brief lecture on how our government works, he gave us some pointers. What stuck out to me the most is when he told us to reach out to our congressmen. He kept saying that we might feel unimportant and feel like a regular civilian way over our heads, but our voices need to be heard and will be heard. He explained to us that every idea brought up to a congressman is taken down and looked at. I had never known an individual can make that much of a difference, but I’ve seen it in my life. My father and his friends are close to a former member of the California State Senate, Lou Correa. So I know a close relationship can be accomplished, and with that, our voices into law.
Reflection#2 Chanh M. Pham, PharmD Candidate 2019
Michael Cervantes is a district representative and he was talking about bills and the steps needed for it to become law. The players involved in this law-making process are Congress, the President, and the Supreme Court. First, members of congress introduces a bill, then the bill is assigned to a standing committee and decide if the bill needs any further revision. If a bill passes through a committee, it is then reported and debated on the floor of the house that it was introduced in where they decide if the bill will be voted on. A bill must be passed with the majority vote, and if it does get passed, then it will be sent to the other house to be assigned to another committee. The house and senate must agree on the same piece of legislation. If the bill passes both houses, then the president will then decide if it will be signed and passed, or vetoed. Only after the bill has passed the House of Representative, Senate, and President will it then become law. A keeper for me was learning about bill HR-592, which allows pharmacists to treat Medicare patients in underserved areas and populations and will get reimbursed for their services. It is relevant with my life because after pharmacy school, I want to work in third world countries that deals with underserved areas.