Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provide essential healthcare coverage for more than 80 million individuals and families, including approximately 40% of all children in the United States. These programs are the single largest insurer of all children. A large body of research shows that access to Medicaid in childhood leads to longer, healthier lives, a better chance to finish high school and college, and more prosperous futures for our children.
CHOP is committed to preserving and enhancing these safety net programs, which benefit our patients and play a crucial role in reducing healthcare disparities. We work with legislators across our delegations to keep this top of mind and to educate them on the unique role these programs play in the lives of children. This advocacy is critical for moments when the safety net programs are at risk of reforms that would negatively impact families.
The health and well-being of children and families is impacted by what happens both inside and outside of our hospitals’ walls. CHOP strives to increase health equity and to positively impact children and families. Our team collaborates with groups across the hospital, including the Center for Health Equity, Center for Violence Prevention, PolicyLab and Office of Community Impact, to amplify the impact of these efforts through advocacy and government action.
CHOP is an academic medical center with a track record of excellence in pediatric research, including the discovery of cures for pediatric illnesses. We help programs across the enterprise obtain government support and resources to advance innovation in pediatric care and continue to move the needle toward breakthroughs that enhance high-quality healthcare delivery for children.
Too many children across the country are unable to access timely, quality mental healthcare. When they can, too often it is far from home. Our mental healthcare system is not equipped to support children’s needs and government action is crucial in order to address these challenges. We work closely with CHOP’s Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences to be a leading voice advocating for change.
CHOP is committed to training the future pediatric workforce and meeting the needs of children and families in our region. We will continue to advocate for resources and programs that bolster the pediatric workforce and allow us to provide transformational care to our patients. This is needed for pediatrics, in particular, because hospitals across the country increasingly cannot fill pediatric subspecialty positions. Those most impacted include developmental pediatrics, psychiatry, neurology and genetics. Further, the number of pediatric inpatient beds declined by almost 20% in the past decade as general hospitals shifted to the focus on care of adults.