To be eligible for membership in the National Health Council, all organizations must meet the following criteria:
- The organization is national in scope.
- The organization has been in operation for no less than three years.
In addition, the following criteria apply to specific membership categories.
Voluntary Health Agencies
Voluntary Health Agencies (VHAs) are defined as 501(c)(3) organizations composed of individuals, both lay and professional, voluntarily and democratically organized. Their mission is to combat a particular disease, disability, or group of diseases and disabilities, or to improve and protect the health of a particular group of people. They receive a substantial amount of financial support from voluntary contributions from the public at large. They engage in programs, such as research, education, advocacy, and service to individuals and communities.
Patient advocacy groups must meet the National Health Council Standards of Excellence to be accepted into membership.
Patient advocacy organization members are also invited to attend the annual Voluntary Health Leadership Conference, an exclusive gathering that brings together their CEOs and senior volunteer leaders to learn about the latest in medical research and health care policy and to share organizational best practices.
Professional and Membership Associations
Professional associations are health-related organizations consisting primarily of individuals, or of state and local groups of individuals, meeting stated qualifications of training or experience. Other membership associations are health-related associations of individuals or institutions, including alliances and coalitions. Members of this category are expected to demonstrate a broad base of funding either from many individuals or multiple institutions.
Nonprofit organizations with an Interest in Health
Nonprofit Organizations with an Interest in Health are organizations engaged in or concerned with health issues that support the mission of the National Health Council.
Business and Industry
Business and Industry members are for-profit companies engaged in the sale of health-related products or services, such as pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device companies. This category includes any subsidiaries or related entities, such as foundations, affiliated with an organization that would otherwise be classified as a Business and Industry member.
Associate Members are organizations that are considered to be primarily vendors. Associate Members have all member privileges, except they are not allowed to be represented on the NHC's Board of Directors or Nominating Committee and cannot vote at meetings of the entire membership.