Help me advocate for your child

Thirty-six lab coats hang outside our hospital to raise awareness of the impact of proposed funding cuts to resident training programs on health care for children.

When I tell people what I do for a living, often I get a puzzled look when I say, “I advocate for children’s health.” I explain that I work for Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, and it’s my job to make sure our elected officials understand how the work they do impacts the lives of children.

For example, a recent proposed change in President Obama’s budget calls for the elimination of federal funding for Children’s Graduate Medical Education. This cut is alarming because it has a real impact on Wisconsin and the health of our children. The funding provides children’s hospitals with much-needed dollars for physician education. In Wisconsin, 60 percent of residents from Children’s Hospital’s training programs choose to stay here when they complete their residency training. Some may practice in primary care by joining a pediatric practice and others choose to train further. All of them help our children.

So, you may ask, how does the elimination of federal funding for this program impact our children? It means we’ll have fewer doctors who specialize in the care of children to take care of our kids.

Please consider contacting your federal elected officials. It truly can have a great deal of impact and only takes a few minutes. In fact, it takes less than 10 individual letters to get an elected official’s attention on a particular issue. To learn more about the funding cuts, visit

Are you interested in learning more about Children’s Hospital advocacy efforts and the work we are doing with elected officials? Sign up to receive updates from Children’s Advocacy Network.

~ Michelle Mettner, vice president, Government Relations, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

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