Why Build a Working Group?
The three partner states found that recruiting a number of energetic, enthusiastic individuals onto a working group can help ensure the Campaign’s success. If you are short on staff and funds, a working group can help you spread the One & Only injection safety message widely through the members’ professional resources and contacts. Once you have gathered recruits from your local/state health department, professional health organizations, medical specialty societies, and patient safety/patient advocacy groups, they can provide:
- Advice on best methods for outreach to providers and patients.
- Assistance in spreading the One & Only Campaign message and materials.
- Workgroup referrals.
- For example, the New York partner state invited the New York State Academy of Family Physicians (NYSAFP) to join their working group because of a contact made by another working group member. In turn, the NYSAFP representative shared information with the New York Chapter of the American College of Physicians, which also joined the One & Only Campaign.
Where to Start?
Building your working group can be as simple as spending five or ten minutes to send some emails and/or make phone calls. Focus on attracting a few key people whose skills match your initial goals and build from there. Members from diverse backgrounds can add perspectives that otherwise would be missed. Possible areas of recruitment include:
- Members of a professional association or organization
- Colleagues who are interested in the topic
- Educational institutions
- Local, state and national professional medical groups, associations, organizations and boards
- Patient advocates
Keeping Working Groups Engaged
Working group conference calls are great to generate ideas and enthusiasm, but given busy schedules and other commitments, some of the most fruitful work has happened via e-mail and informal contact. Partner states e-mail weekly news digests related to injection safety, and provide more detailed updates on quarterly conference calls. A few suggestions:
- Send a Follow-up E-mail: Some working group members may be more apt to share information by e-mail after they have had time to think about a topic or issue.
- An occasional one-on-one “brainstorming” phone call can be beneficial.
- The actions by a single member can spark participations by others. When one group member blogs about the One & Only Campaign or features a link to the One & Only web site on their web page, others often follow suit.
- Be Proactive. You might suggest, “I know you have a conference coming up, could you use some SIPC materials to display?”