Advocating for the future of pediatric care

Every patient and family can be an advocate and we are inviting you to join with us in making pediatric health care stronger. We need families to get involved in important health care issues because the patient voice is the most important voice. The Children’s Hospitals Graduate Medical Education (CHGME) program is the only federal program in the country dedicated to training pediatricians and it will expire in September if Congress does not renew it. James Mandell, MD, CEO of Children’s Hospital Boston and O. Marion Burton, MD, FAAP, president of the American Academy of Pediatrics, have written a compelling commentary on the importance of continuing funding for the CHGME program that we hope you will all read.

There is bipartisan legislation pending in the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate that would reauthorize the program for another five years. In addition, Congress is now considering what the program’s funding level will be for FY 2012. Congress might decide to: raise it back up to its FY 2010 level of $317.5 million annually; level fund it at $270 million; reduce it further; or even eliminate the program. Any cut to the program could have a significant impact on the ability of children’s hospitals to train pediatricians and pediatric specialists.

The National Association of Children’s Hospitals, the American Academy of Pediatrics and children’s teaching hospitals like Children’s Hospital Boston, are fighting for CHGME funding at its FY 2010 level of $317.5 million. As an advocate, you have the power to take action on this child health issue by writing your member of Congress. Visit the Children’s Hospital Boston advocacy page to contact Congress now.

~ Jim Kaufman, PhD, Vice President for Public Policy, National Association of Children’s Hospitals

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