Washington, DC – U.S. Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Jack Reed (D-RI) today announced that a provision they fought for to protect funding for children’s psychiatric teaching hospitals, including Bradley Hospital in East Providence, is included in the bipartisan legislation to reauthorize the Children’s Hospital Graduate Medical Education (CHGME) Program. Whitehouse and Reed joined Senators Bob Casey (D-PA) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) to introduce the CHGME Support Reauthorization Act of 2018, which will fund high-quality medical education for residents training at children’s hospitals.
“We are fortunate to have one of the few children’s psychiatric hospitals in the country right here in Rhode Island. Bradley Hospital’s residency program, which trains the next generation of doctors who specialize in caring for the mental health needs of children, is an asset to our entire medical community,” said Whitehouse. “This bill will once again secure a place for Bradley in this important teaching program.”
“We need to ensure that children have access to high quality specialized care, including parity for mental and behavioral health. Bradley Hospital, Hasbro, and other children’s teaching hospitals must have the federal support they need to train the next generation of highly qualified pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists. This legislation will help us do just that and better serve children experiencing mental health issues,” said Reed, a member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services (Labor-H), who helped include $315 million for CHGME in the Omnibus Appropriations bill that passed last week, an increase of $15 million over fiscal year 2017.
Whitehouse and Reed successfully fought to include the provision that enables Bradley Hospital to get federal funding to support its residency program in the last reauthorization of the CHGME Program. From 2015 through the end of 2018, Bradley will have received $1.2 million in federal funding for the program.
“Lifespan, and in particular, Bradley Hospital, thanks Senators Whitehouse and Reed for their tireless efforts to secure funding for the CHGME program,” said Daniel J. Wall, President of Bradley Hospital. “The Senators’ work over the years has allowed Bradley to receive these federal dollars to supplement Bradley’s financial support for teaching more of our future doctors in the vital and much-needed world of child psychiatry. Bradley’s nationwide recognition as a leader in treating child and adolescent psychiatric illnesses is a testament to the hard work and superb training that occurs there.”
For almost two decades, the CHGME program has provided children’s teaching hospitals with federal support for job training for physicians who care for children. The program was first enacted by Congress in 1999, and has been reauthorized three times since then, each time with broad bipartisan support. The program provides funding to over 50 freestanding children’s hospitals around the country.
The creation of the CHGME program reversed a decline in the number of residents training at children’s hospitals. Today, these hospitals train approximately half of all pediatricians.