WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown met this week with the leadership of several of Ohio’s Children’s Hospitals to discuss the Children’s Hospital Graduate Medical Education (CHGME) Program and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
“To give our children a healthy start in life, we must make sure there is no shortage of access to the specialized care they need,” said Brown. “That assurance is two pronged; it demands access to child-specific health care coverage and an abundance of pediatricians and pediatric specialists to provide care. Together, the Children’s Hospital Graduate Medical Education Program and the Children’s Health Insurance Program make both of these possible. Meeting with this group is an important opportunity to learn from those on the frontlines what we can do in Congress to help improve and grow these critical programs.”
Brown met this week with several CEOs and representatives from Children’s Hospitals and the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association. Below is a list of attendees by organization:
University Hospitals Rainbow Babies and Children’s
Nationwide Children’s Hospital
Ohio Children’s Hospital Association
Throughout his tenure in Congress, Brown has worked to expand access to care for children. While serving in the U.S. House of Representatives as the Ranking Democrat on a key health subcommittee, Brown authored the Children’s Hospitals Education and Research Act of 1998, which first proposed the Children’s Hospital Graduate Medical Education (CHGME) program. A five-year reauthorization of the program -- which supports children’s health care by providing freestanding children’s hospitals with federal funding to train pediatricians and pediatric specialists – was signed into law in April 2014. In March 2015, Brown led 31 Senators in a letter to the Senate Appropriations Committee seeking continued funding in fiscal year 2016.
In December, Brown announced that the year-end appropriations bill for fiscal year 2016 included $295 million for the CHGME program, which supports children’s health care by providing freestanding children’s hospitals with federal funding to train pediatricians and pediatric specialists. This marks a $30 million dollar increase from fiscal year 2015. The increased appropriations will allow for continued funding for the children’s hospitals in Ohio that continue to depend on CHGME dollars, helping ensure our doctors receive the training necessary to provide our children with the highest quality of care. Brown led the effort to include an increase in CHGME funding in this year’s appropriations package.
Brown also led efforts in the Senate to extend funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). In February, he introduced the Protecting & Retaining Our Children’s Health Insurance Program (PRO-CHIP) Act. PRO-CHIP would extend funding for CHIP through fiscal year 2019. This bill was the baseline policy for the two-year CHIP funding extension that passed in April as part of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015.
In January, Brown joined a bipartisan group of six senators to introduce legislation that would help coordinate care and improve health outcomes for children covered by Medicaid with medically complex conditions – a top legislative priority for these families and children’s hospitals across the country. The Advancing Care for Exceptional Kids Act of 2015, or “ACE Kids Act” would improve care coordination, quality measures, and cost containment for children in Medicaid who need specialized care and often need to cross state lines to get it.