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Second Opinion

Learn about policy issues important to medical schools and teaching hospitals, with Executive Vice President Atul Grover, M.D., Ph.D.

Washington Highlights

Senate Committee Votes to Extend CHGME Authorization

September 9, 2011—The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Sept. 7 approved AAMC-supported legislation (S. 958) to reauthorize the Children’s Hospitals Graduate Medical Education (CHGME) program at the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). The bill extends the program’s authorization, set to expire at the end of the current fiscal year, through FY 2016. The committee approved the bill by voice vote without changes, after Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) introduced and withdrew an amendment to extend eligibility for the program to certain children’s psychiatric hospitals.

Senator Robert Casey, Jr. (D-Pa.), who co-authored the bill with Senator Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), issued a Sept. 7 statement praising the committee for acting to ensure hospitals “have the resources required to meet the essential need for a specialized workforce to care for children.” Committee Chair Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) also lauded the bill’s passage, noting that the “CHGME program has been successful in growing the number of doctors who choose to become pediatricians and pediatric specialists, improving access to life-saving medicine for kids across the country.”

Next, the full Senate must approve the legislation; a similar bill (H.R. 1852) awaits floor consideration in the House, after the House Energy and Commerce Committee approved it July 28 [see Washington Highlights, July 29].

The program faces a separate hurdle in terms of funding, which will be determined through the appropriations process. The president’s FY 2012 budget proposed eliminating funding for CHGME, and the program endured a $48.5 million (15.3 percent) cut in FY 2011 [see Washington Highlights, May 20].

Contact:

Tannaz Rasouli
Sr. Director, Public Policy & Strategic Outreach
Telephone: 202-828-0525
Email: trasouli@aamc.org

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Jason Kleinman
Sr. Legislative Analyst, Govt. Relations
Telephone: 202-903-0806
Email: jkleinman@aamc.org