WASHINGTON, D.C. – Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus and Akron Children’s Hospital will receive new federal resources to expand a health care program that will serve more than a half million Ohio children. U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) urged the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to approve the Ohio hospitals’ grant to support the Partners for Kids (PFK) program that reduces health care costs and increases access to quality care.
“This grant will improve pediatric healthcare, reduce costs, and enhance the health outcomes of Ohio’s children and families,” Brown said. “Partners for Kids provides critical care to thousands of central Ohio children. By expanding the program to Akron Children’s Hospital, we’ll ensure high quality health care to children throughout northeast Ohio.”
Currently serving 300,000 children, the $13 million grant, would expand the PFK program to serve more than 200,000 additional children. This grant will allow the PFK to serve the children in 46 counties including most of Ohio’s Appalachian counties with higher rates of infant mortality and chronic diseases. The PFK serves as a national model for pediatric accountable care organizations (ACO) by providing the highest level of integrated care to Ohio’s children.
The full text of the letter Brown wrote to CMS is below.
January 20, 2012
Ms. Mary Greene
Grants Management Officer
Office of Acquisition and Grants Management
Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Mail Stop B3-30-03
7500 Security Blvd.
Baltimore, MD 21244
Dear Ms. Greene:
We would like to bring to your attention the competitive grant application submitted by the Nationwide Children’s Hospital (NCH). This grant involves a partnership with NCH, Akron Children’s Hospital, and the Ohio Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and seeks to utilize Healthcare Innovation Challenge funding to expand a pediatric accountable care organization (ACO) in Ohio.
We understand that the proposed project would further the development of an innovative pediatric ACO known as Partners for Kids (PFK) – the largest and oldest pediatric ACO. PFK already serves nearly 300,000 Medicaid enrolled children, and this project would allow PFK to add as members Akron Children’s Hospital and its integrated pediatric health care system. Funding this project would ensure that more than a half million children in 46 of Ohio’s 88 counties, including 25,000 disabled children, would receive medical care. This includes urban and rural areas facing high rates of infant mortality, chronic diseases, and poor pediatric outcomes.
NCH officials indicate that this proposal would improve pediatric healthcare, reduce costs, and enhance the health outcomes of Ohio’s children and families. We ask that you give all due consideration to this request. Thank you.
Rob Portman Sherrod Brown
United States Senator United States Senator