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McCollum Leads Bipartisan Charge for Emergency Funding for Children's Hospitals

April 22, 2020
Press Release
Children’s hospitals applaud push for funding to ensure critical care for vulnerable children continues during coronavirus pandemi

Congresswoman Betty McCollum (DFL-Minn.) has initiated and led a bipartisan letter to House leadership requesting dedicated funding for children’s specialty hospitals in the next COVID-19 federal emergency response package. Signed by 149 Members of Congress, including 30 Republicans, the letter signals strong support for ensuring children’s hospitals can continue to provide care to critically ill children during the coronavirus pandemic and beyond.

Representatives from children’s hospitals within Minnesota’s Fourth District released the following statements:

“Gillette Children’s is grateful for the leadership of Representative McCollum,” said Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare CEO Barbara Joers. “This bipartisan letter demonstrates strong support for children’s hospitals across the country. As the safety net providers to thousands of kids in Minnesota, direct assistance for children’s hospitals is needed to ensure the best care for our state’s children as we continue to respond to the impact of COVID-19.”

“We appreciate the advocacy and support of children and our state's children's hospitals by Representative McCollum and all the letter signers,” said Dr. Marc Gorelick, Children's Minnesota President and CEO. “Almost half of the children we serve each year depend on Medicaid, which has largely been left out of federal funding relief opportunities. During this unprecedented and uncertain time, we must do everything we can to ensure we have a robust health care system that can meet the needs of all our kids.”

In the letter, McCollum and the legislators wrote:

“Children’s hospitals joined the national effort to support the public health crisis, but these deferred volumes have resulted in significant revenue losses and the delay in care has been distressing to parents and patients who have often waited months for an important diagnostic or therapeutic treatment. Additionally, children’s hospitals are facing new financial challenges for the nonelective treatment that has continued. This care for many of these patients cannot be delayed due to the COVID-19 response; their care must move forward on schedule in order to receive the necessary treatment for their pediatric cancer or be able to avoid facing a lifelong disability. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 relief efforts enacted to date may provide only minor assistance for children’s hospitals—leaving the safety net providers for our nation’s children with a significant burden. Children’s hospitals cannot sustain financial losses of this magnitude without some form of federal relief funding exclusively directed towards children’s hospitals...We urge you to include federal funding for our children’s hospitals as they continue to play a vital role in our nation’s fight against COVID-19 and provide the necessary care to our health system’s most vulnerable children.”

The letter was signed by:

Original Cosigners: McCollum, Long, Eshoo, Herrera Beutler, DeGette, Amodei, and Matsui
Additional Cosigners (149): Allred, Axne, Bacon, Beatty, Bergman, Bishop, Rob Bishop, Blunt Rochester, Brown, Carson, Casten, Castor, Castro, Chabot, Chu, Cicilline, Clark, Clay, Cleaver, Cohen, Cole, Correa, Costa, Craig, Crawford, Crow, Davids, Danny K. Davis, Susan Davis, Rodney Davis, Dean, Deutch, Dingell, Doggett, Doyle, Engel, Escobar, Evans, Fitzpatrick, Fletcher, Foster, Fudge, Gabbard, Gallagher, Chuy Garcia, Anthony Gonzalez, Vicente Gonzalez, Al Green, Grothman, Hagedorn, Harder, Harris, Hastings, Hayes, French Hill, Holmes Norton, Horn, Hurd, Jackson Lee, Jayapal, Bill Johnson, Eddie Bernice Johnson, Hank Johnson, David P. Joyce, Kaptur, Robin Kelly, Kennedy, Kildee, Kilmer, Kind, Krishnamoorthi, Lamb, Lamborn, Langevin, Larson, Lawrence, Lawson, Barbara Lee, Andy Levin, Mike Levin, Lewis, Lieu, Lofgren, Lowenthal, Lynch, Sean Patrick Maloney, McAdams, McEachin, McGovern, McNerney, Moore, Stephanie Murphy, Neguse, Norcross, Olson, Omar, Panetta, Peterson, Perlmutter, Phillips, Pingree, Pocan, Porter, Pressley, Raskin, Richmond, Roe, Rouda, Ruppersberger, Rush, Rutherford, Ryan, Sánchez, Sarbanes, Scanlon, Scott, Schakowsky, Schiff, Schneider, Schrier, Sewell, Sires, Jason Smith, Soto, Speier, Stanton, Steil, Stevens, Stewart, Stivers, Suozzi, Bennie Thompson, Glenn Thompson, Titus, Trahan, Trone, Turner, Vargas, Wagner, Wenstrup, Wilson, Yarmuth

The full letter is available here.

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