IU School of Medicine Student Portal



A course exploring current issues in medicine and effective advocacy techniques through journal articles, guest lecturers, documentaries, and literature. Topics will include but are not limited to affordable care act (ACA)/healthcare funding , electronic medical records (EMR), patient satisfaction-based payments, technology and healthcare, cost of healthcare, malpractice/tort reform, retail clinics, and global healthcare systems. Students will be expected to complete a project addressing a contemporary healthcare issue through advocacy.

Elective Details:

Primary Contact for Add/Drops: Dr. Richard Gunderman (rbgunder@iupui.edu )

Director: Richard Gunderman, M.D., Ph.D.

Campus: Indianapolis

Location: Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health (Indianapolis)

Other Faculty:

Learning Objectives

  • 1) Gain an understanding of advocacy for contemporary issues in healthcare on behalf of their profession, their patients, and their communities (SBP5)
  • 2) Illustrate strategies for identifying and analyzing contemporary healthcare issues and policy (SBP3)
  • 3) Describe and contrast effective advocacy strategies to target various stakeholders including policy makers, the media, the community, and legislators (SBP5)
  • 4) Explain how physician advocates can effectively partner with community and professional organizations to promote positive change in healthcare delivery (SBP5)
  • 5) Distinguish various legislative strategies to implement policy initiatives, and become empowered to participate actively in the political process (SBP3)
  • 6) Develop an awareness of the multiple viewpoints of contemporary healthcare issues (SBP3)


  • Professional Development Evaluation Form; Advocacy Course Rubric; (Students will be assessed on their participation in group discussions, and completion of required assignments and projects).

Enrollment Information

Prerequisites: 4th year status

Availability with Max Students per Month:


Duty Hours: 20-40

Time Distribution: 75% Lecture/Seminar; 25% Library/Research

Elective Type Category: PD - Professional Development

Notes and Enrollment Information:

Add/Drop Contact Person: Dr. Richard Gunderman (rbgunder@iupui.edu ) Following the meeting course participants will have a debrief in which they discuss the various topics highlighted at the meeting and the various advocacy approaches concerning those topics. Each student will complete a project either individually or in pairs addressing a contemporary healthcare issues of their choice and develop advocacy strategy to promote positive change in that issue. They must submit a rough draft project proposal by the end of the second week to the course director for approval. During the last week of the course, the students will submit a formal written proposal of their advocacy project and present their projects to the other course participants and critically assess each other's projects. With this project students will demonstrate their in-depth knowledge of the issue their projects address and their ability to develop appropriate advocacy topics to bring about positive change regarding that issue. Given the limited time frame of this course, it would be difficult to reasonably implement a fully developed advocacy project, but students will be strongly encouraged to continue their projects in the subsequent months.

Third Year Elective? No

Interprofessional Skills and Service Learning

Interprofessional Collaborative Skills: None

Service Learning Included: None