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Quigley Announces $380,000 For Children's Memorial Cardiac Unit

Aug 5, 2009
Press Release

CHICAGO, IL - Today, at a visit to Children's Memorial Hospital, Congressman Mike Quigley (D-IL) announced that the U.S. House of Representatives recently approved his request for $380,000 in federal funding to support the not-for-profit hospital's Comprehensive Cardiac Unit (CCU). The CCU will be part of Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago opening in 2012.

"In the midst of our national healthcare debate, it's important for lawmakers to come to ground zero and see the real-life impact and need for comprehensive reform," said Congressman Quigley. "While so many providers are struggling and closing their doors, I am happy to be able to help such a remarkable institution open new ones."

The requested funds will help construct Chicago's first pediatric CCU equipped to diagnose and treat a broad range of complex heart conditions from infancy through young adulthood. The project will provide services to children throughout the region that could not be obtained elsewhere. Additionally, it will stimulate a convergence of world-class clinical care, research, education and advocacy in a unique environment and has the potential to alter the future of pediatric health care for the region and beyond.  Lurie Children's Hospital construction project will generate approximately 3,000 new jobs. 

"As the state's primary partner in caring for children on Medicaid, Children's Memorial Hospital is pleased to receive federal funding for the new CCU. We are extremely grateful to Congress for supporting this vital investment in the health and well-being of sick and injured children," said Patrick M. Magoon, president and CEO of Children's Memorial.

Children's Memorial is one of the top pediatric hospitals in the country, last year caring for nearly 126,000 children, many of whom were referred from 32 countries and all 50 states.

"You need a heart of gold and a soul of compassion to care for children every day and night,"added Quigley on his site visit with hospital staff.  "As a neighbor and your representative, I am your friend, but you are my heroes."

Last month, Cong. Quigley introduced a landmark earmark reform bill that would prohibit funding requests to for-profit entities, citing numerous abuses of such funds being traded for political favors. The bi-partisan initiative, H.Res. 614, was designed to ensure that Congress was "funding the fundamentals, not playing politics with pork." All of Quigley's public and non-profit requests are listed on his Web site.

Funding for Children's Memorial was requested in cooperation with other members of the Illinois delegation, including Representatives Melissa Bean, Luis Gutierrez, and Jesse Jackson, Jr. The request was approved by the House within a larger appropriations bill, H.R. 3293, and will be considered by the Senate when Congress resumes session in the fall.