Press Room

March 15, 2019

Statement in Response to Gov. DeWine’s State Biennial Budget Proposal

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The following statement can be attributed to Deborah Feldman, President & CEO, Dayton Children’s Hospital and Chair, Board of Directors, Ohio Children’s Hospital Association, in response to Governor DeWine’s state biennial budget proposal:

March 15, 2019 – Governor DeWine has delivered on his campaign promise to unapologetically and passionately put children at the top of his administration’s policy agenda with the state biennial budget proposal announced today.

To say that Ohio’s children’s hospitals are pleased with this proposal is an understatement, because in fact, we are thrilled for Ohio’s children. The Governor clearly understands that prioritizing children is an investment in the future of all Ohioans – our future workforce, citizens and leaders. He has demonstrated his commitment time and again over the last two months through several executive orders impacting children and, most notably, with his first act as Governor by appointing LeeAnne Cornyn as Director of Children’s Initiatives.

The DeWine Administration budget proposal elevates the importance of investing in Ohio children and ensures Ohio’s children have access to critical services and quality health care they need to thrive. This includes opening telehealth policies to increase access to behavioral and physical health services in partnership with schools; Medicaid funding for children’s wellness to improve outcomes, including comprehensive primary care services for pediatricians; and continuing the children’s hospital quality program that has saved thousands of lives and millions of dollars since its inception. Additionally, half of Ohio’s children rely on stable, predictable, adequate Medicaid funding to ensure they get the access they need to comprehensive, high quality health care. The Governor’s proposal preserves this vital health care coverage for 1.25 million Ohio children.

The Governor’s proposal demonstrates that he understands the complexity of children’s health care. Children are not simply “little adults.” They require health care that addresses their unique and specific needs as they grow and develop. They are our state’s most precious asset – and Governor DeWine gets it.

The Ohio Children’s Hospital Association and our six members – Akron Children’s Hospital, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Dayton Children’s Hospital, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, ProMedica Toledo Children’s Hospital, and UH/Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital – work every day to save, protect and enhance the lives of Ohio’s children.

Clearly, Governor DeWine has demonstrated that he shares in our vision to make Ohio the best place for child health with his biennial budget proposal. As our recently commissioned Assessment of Child Health and Health Care in Ohio indicated, Ohio’s children are counting on all of us to join together to ensure this vision becomes reality. We look forward to working with members of the Ohio General Assembly in the coming months to ensure that Ohio’s children remain a top priority as they deliberate the Governor’s budget proposal so that we can improve health outcomes for all Ohio’s children.

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Media contact: Angela Krile: 740-974-3948, angela@krilecommunications.com, T: @angkrile