More endowed chairs are needed at the Children's Medical Research
Institute to meet increasing demand for services, said its executive
The institute has already provided 12 endowed chairs for the OU
Medical Center, said Kathy McCracken, executive director at CMRI.
The endowed chairs are one of the main reasons demand has
increased at The Children's Hospital at the OU Medical Center, she
said. The hospital recorded 192,276 pediatric patients visits in
2005, up 48 percent from 129,852 in 2004 and up 118.7 percent from
87,912 in 2002.
Because we have brought in all of these specialists, there are
more children staying in the state for treatment than in the past,
McCracken said. In the past we did not have these specialists, so
the patients were going to facilities in other states.
Another reason for the increase in patients is doctors from the
hospital are seeing patients at satellite sites, she said.
We have eight more endowed chairs we are working on right now,
The mechanism that really helps us get donors for this program is
the state's matching funds for endowments, she said. That is why the
state matching funds are so important. They have helped us improve
the health of children.
CMRI's endowed chair program was established in 1983 so children
in the state could receive the best care. Specialty areas for the
program include cancer, kidney disease, pediatric diabetes, cystic
fibrosis, infectious disease, trauma, developmental and behavioral
pediatrics, and child psychology.
Renowned physicians who serve on our National Advisory Board have
visited with all of our endowed chairs and are astonished at the
success we have had here in Oklahoma with recruiting some of the
best pediatric researchers and specialists nationwide, McCracken
Terrence Stull, CMRI Patricia Price Browne Distinguished Chair in
Pediatrics, works with McCracken to recruit pediatricians and
The money raised by Children's Medical Research Institute plays
an invaluable role in quality health care for Oklahoma's children as
well as for the generations of children to come, by bringing
physicians and programs to Oklahoma to improve the quality of life
for all, Stull said.
CMRI also has a campaign in progress to raise $30 million.
The National Excellence Program's $30 million goal includes $15
million for childhood cancer research and $15 million for childhood
diabetes research. …