The AHA, American Academy of Pediatrics, and Children’s Hospital Association yesterday urged President Obama to fully fund the Children’s Hospitals Graduate Medical Education program at its authorized level of $300 million in the Department of Health and Human Services budget for fiscal year 2017. “The 56 freestanding children’s hospitals that receive CHGME funding train approximately half of all future pediatricians and the majority of all residents in pediatric subspecialties,” the organizations wrote. “CHGME funding has decreased 17% since FY 2010, from $317.5 million to $265 million in FY 2015. The effects of continued diminished support for pediatric training are felt by children and their families. Serious pediatric workforce shortages persist, most acutely among pediatric subspecialties. Localized shortages of pediatric primary care also continue, particularly in certain rural areas. There are also several pediatric specialties at risk of sustaining tremendous losses as the current workforce retires and not enough new specialists are trained. Additionally, cuts have slowed the ability to grow in areas of need, which will result in fewer pediatric subspecialists across the country.”

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