Suffredin- An Advocate for All of Us  
 

Accountability
Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions
Unsung Heroine

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

   
 

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

   
  Cook County is the second most populous county in the nation. It is the 19th largest government in the U.S.
   
     
     
     



County may see Medicaid money cut
Plan to close clinics could prove costly as state changes system

Sunday, February 18, 2007
Chicago Tribune
by Judith Graham and Mickey Ciokajlo

Cook County's health bureau could lose an enormous amount of money from Medicaid--its single largest revenue source--if it closes 14 of its 26 medical clinics, the governor's health-care adviser warned Friday.

That's because of fundamental changes now being made to the Illinois Medicaid program, which is adopting a form of managed care.
Under the new system--known as primary care case management--Medicaid recipients will be required to select a doctor to oversee their medical care.

The goal is to ensure needy individuals have a "medical home." Previously, Medicaid members could go to any doctor they wanted and change doctors at will.

More than 819,000 Medicaid members in Cook County will receive information packets over the next five weeks telling them about the changes.

If the county closes clinics and reduces the ranks of doctors, there will be fewer opportunities to sign up Medicaid members for primary care case management, said Anne Marie Murphy, a senior health care adviser to the governor. Patients who had used Cook facilities could end up finding medical homes elsewhere, and Medicaid money would follow them.

The financial losses could be devastating, Murphy said. This year, Medicaid revenues at the county's health bureau are expected to reach about $300 million, or about 78 percent of all funding for patient care.

The state reached out to county health bureau officials last year to make sure they were aware of the upcoming Medicaid changes and prepared to adapt.

"We realized it could severely affect their budgets" if Medicaid patients didn't sign up with the county health system, Murphy said. So "it came as a bit of a surprise to find they were now going to close these clinics."

Dr. Robert Simon, county health chief, said he is aware of the risk but hopes "with the right systems in place, we will retain these patients." The county's 12 remaining clinics should accommodate all existing patients when hours are extended, even though waiting times will become longer initially, Simon acknowledged.

That, too, could be a problem, because the new Medicaid rules require that patients have "timely access" to services, Murphy said.

On Friday, County Board President Todd Stroger said in a radio interview that he would reject a plan by county commissioners to keep all 26 clinics open. The interview will air at 9:30 p.m. Sunday on WBBM-AM's "At Issue" program.

"It's one of those things that sounds good ... but when you look at the whole picture you find that some of the clinics just don't justify the cost," he said.

Asked if there was room for compromise with commissioners on the number of clinics, Stroger said, "We've come up with the right number." Stroger said he would veto the commissioners' budget amendment if necessary, because it ignores Simon's restructuring.

In a related development Friday, Deputy Gov. Louanner Peters offered state assistance to Cook County in an effort to forestall cuts to medical services.

In a letter to Stroger, Peters said the state would consider purchasing 200 acres of land around Oak Forest Hospital for $30 million to $60 million and provide assistance with Medicaid billing. Some $200 million in Medicaid bills remain unpaid because the county didn't list the procedure being billed or listed the wrong procedure, the letter noted.

Steve Mayberry, Stroger's spokesman, said the county president appreciated the state's willingness to help but was disappointed that the offer "provides no immediate relief nor additional Medicaid funds."



Recent Headlines

Cook County forest worker was going 76 mph in 30 mph zone, had THC in system during fatal crash while on job: prosecutors
Thursday, July 19, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Judge faces ‘tough day’ in court answering charges he brought loaded gun to work
Thursday, July 19, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Preckwinkle, Evans end budget battle
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

How Transparent and Accountable Are Chicago, Cook County Governments?
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
WTTW Chicago Tonight

2 Cook County courthouses to close, employees spared layoffs under budget settlement: officials
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Troubled detainee at center of unusual court fight between Loyola hospital, Cook County
Monday, July 16, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County Commissioners Confounded by Hiring of Health System Consultant
Monday, July 16, 2018
WBEZ Chicago Public Radio

Doctor fired by Cook County medical examiner now under the microscope in Indiana
Sunday, July 15, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

County officials defend Forest Preserves police in wake of man harassing woman over Puerto Rican flag shirt
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Familiar questions about ‘bystander effect’ arise after man berates woman for Puerto Rico shirt
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Berrios' analysts used Zillow, other shortcuts in assessing property values, documents show
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Northbrook to revisit Cook County paid sick leave policy after opting out last year
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County Forest Preserves officials discuss officer's resignation
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Amid video fallout, Cook County Forest Preserve District reveals fatal crash involving worker and governmental truck
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Transformation in the outdoors
Friday, July 13, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

Forest preserve cop resigns after apparently failing to help woman being harassed over Puerto Rico shirt
Thursday, July 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

5 things: A civics lesson on Puerto Rico after man rants about woman's flag T-shirt, questions citizenship
Thursday, July 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County Commissioners: Get Rid of Forest Preserve Police
Thursday, July 12, 2018
WTTW Chicago Tonight

Schneider wants hearing over fatal crash blamed on Cook forest preserve driver
Thursday, July 12, 2018
Daily Herald

Man who harassed woman for Puerto Rican flag shirt charged with hate crime
Thursday, July 12, 2018
WLS ABC 7 Chicago

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.
^ TOP