Durbin Discusses His Provider Relief Fund With Lurie Children's Hospital CEO

SPRINGFIELD – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today spoke with Lurie Children’s Hospital CEO Dr. Tom Shanley about the inclusion of independent children’s hospitals in COVID-19 relief funding as hospitals face significant revenue shortfalls as many procedures and patient visits have been scaled back and the cost of personal protective equipment and COVID-19 testing kits have risen.  After hearing that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) funding allocations left out safety net hospitals that serve low-income and vulnerable patient populations, including children’s hospitals, Durbin spoke with HHS Secretary Alex Azar in June about providing these hospitals with the remaining funds in the Provider Relief Fund and revisiting the methodology in which these funds are allocated.  Last week, Lurie Children’s Hospital received $23 million from the Provider Relief Fund.

“Illinois is home to world-class hospitals, including Lurie Children’s Hospital, which is continuing to provide the best possible care to children during the COVID-19 pandemic.  We cannot let children’s hospitals like Lurie be shut out of the HHS funding they so desperately need,” said Durbin.  “I’m grateful for the work of Lurie health care professionals who are doing everything they can to fight back against COVID-19, and I’ll keep fighting to ensure they have every resource they need."

In May, Durbin led 21 of his Senate colleagues in urging Senate leaders to include relief funding specifically for children’s hospitals and pediatric health care providers in the next COVID-19 relief package.