Presidents Budget Proposal Devastates Program that Trains Nationwide Childrens Doctors

February 4, 2008

President Bushs FY2009 budget request eliminates all funding, currently $301 million, for a federal program that trains 4,700 pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists each year at 60 independent childrens teaching hospitals.  Nationwide Childrens Hospital stands to lose $8.5 million if Congress accepts the request.

For the past eight years, Nationwide Childrens has received funding through the Childrens Hospitals Graduate Medical Education (CHGME) program enabling the institution to train many of the pediatricians and subspecialists needed to care for the children of Ohio.  Prior to adoption of the CHGME program, independent childrens hospitals were unintentionally excluded from federal support for physician training.  CHGME has turned around the shortages of pediatric subspecialists that the field of pediatrics had seen for years.

"This program has been critical in our ability to train future pediatricians and specialists to meet the growing demand for childrens health care in Central Ohio, said Steve Allen, MD, CEO of Nationwide Childrens Hospital.

Congress made the Childrens Hospitals GME program a priority since its inception eight years ago. It reauthorized the program at $330 million annually in 2006 and received $301 million last year from Congress for FY 2008.

Ohios Congressional delegation has been largely responsible for the success of this vital program, and we will be counting on their leadership to reject this unwise proposal in the Presidents budget, said Allen.

The nations 60 independent childrens teaching hospitals comprise less than 1% of all hospitals yet train 35 percent of all pediatricians and half of all pediatric specialists.

CHGME has enabled the children's hospitals:
 to sustain and expand their residency programs, turning around a national decline in pediatric residencies,  and
 to sustain and improve services, including services to low-income children in their communities and highly specialized services.

About Nationwide Children's Hospital

Named to the Top 10 Honor Roll on U.S. News & World Report ‘s 2018-19 list of “Best Children’s Hospitals,” Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of America’s largest not-for-profit freestanding pediatric health care systems providing wellness, preventive, diagnostic, treatment and rehabilitative care for infants, children and adolescents, as well as adult patients with congenital disease. Nationwide Children’s has a staff of more than 13,000 providing state-of-the-art pediatric care during more than 1.4 million patient visits annually. As home to the Department of Pediatrics of The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Nationwide Children’s physicians train the next generation of pediatricians and pediatric specialists. The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the Top 10 National Institutes of Health-funded freestanding pediatric research facilities. More information is available at NationwideChildrens.org.