Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  
 

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:  
   
 
 

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

   
 

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

   
  Cook County has the largest unified trial court system in the world, disposing over 6 million cases in 1990 alone.
   
     
     
     



$130 mil. in unpaid hospital bills found
County to recover only $30 mil.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007
Chicago Sun-Times
by STEVE PATTERSON Staff Reporter

More than $130 million in unpaid Cook County hospital bills have been found stuffed into boxes -- and officials said 40 or 50 more boxes could be stashed somewhere else.
While finances and bookkeeping were long known to be a problem in the hospital system, County Board members learned Tuesday just how big the problem had become during the tenure of ex-Board President John Stroger.
The 77 boxes recently discovered were each stuffed with about 2,500 billing forms.
And hospital chief Dr. Robert Simon said there could be another 40 or 50 similar boxes hidden elsewhere.
Bills too old to collect
That's millions more in free services people received, with the county never once attempting to collect payment from the patient or Medicaid.
"We've never hidden the fact that finances have been mismanaged," he said. "We inherited this. We just needed time and money to fix it."
Hospital chief operating officer Tom Glaser said that because many of the bills are so old, the county likely won't be able to collect on most of them.
He expects the county to recover only about $30 million.
Those responsible for county billing have been ousted, Simon said, and more changes are coming.
They must, he said, because state and federal leaders are hesitant to deliver any more money for county health services until the finances are improved. To that end, County Board President Todd Stroger said he's following a recommendation from Sen. Dick Durbin to establish a panel of outside experts to regularly review hospital operations and ensure improvements are made.
That includes shipping those boxes of bills to a company that is now scanning in each one -- at 10,000 a day --to see which ones the county could expect to get paid for.
Nurses call in sick
Although the county had planned to rely on various private contractors to assist with future bill collections, Glaser said the county is now considering working with the Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council and its resources in those collection efforts.
Also Tuesday, Simon reported a string of absences by nurses at Stroger and Provident hospitals, which he suspects was instigated by the nurses' union, upset about job losses because of budget cuts.
While a weekend normally sees about six people call in sick, 30 Provident nurses called in sick last weekend and even more at Stroger, he said.
That led to reduced services, longer waits and overtime for nurses working.
National Nurses Organizing Committee officials, who protested at Tuesday's board meeting, did not return calls.


Recent Headlines

IMPORTANT MESSAGE FROM COMMISSIONER SUFFREDIN
Thursday, May 16, 2019
Special to suffredin.org

Cook County Assessorís Office Publicly Releases Residential Assessment Code and Models
Thursday, April 18, 2019
Special to suffredin.org

EDITORIAL: Long in the MWRD pipeline, IG plan needs a yes vote
Wednesday, April 17, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County Health Cuts Ribbon on Outpatient Center in Arlington Heights
Tuesday, April 16, 2019
Daily Herald

Celebrate Earth Day with the Forest Preserves of Cook County
Tuesday, April 16, 2019
Special to suffredin.org

Homeowners in Chicago have just a few weeks to get current on their 2017 property taxes - or risk losing their homes. WBEZís Odette Yousef reports.
Tuesday, April 16, 2019
WBEZ Chiacgo Public Radio

Editorial: The Foxx-Smollett questions for Inspector General Blanchard
Tuesday, April 16, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Cook County pet owners warned of spring coyote dangers
Monday, April 15, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Cook County inspector general to review prosecutors' handling of Jussie Smollett case
Saturday, April 13, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Foxx requests Cook County IG investigation into handling of Jussie Smollett case
Friday, April 12, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

A challenge to one of Chicago's biggest draws for companies
Friday, April 12, 2019
Crain's Chicago Business

What Evanston's assessments tell us about the new assessor's new math
Friday, April 12, 2019
Crain's Chicago Business

$3.85 million granted in lawsuit against ex-Cook County forest preserve worker charged in fatal on-the-job crash
Thursday, April 11, 2019
Chicago Tribune

A Day in the Life of a Cook County Burn Crew
Wednesday, April 10, 2019
WTTW News

EDITORIAL: Splitting up the regionís sanitation board is an idea that stinks
Monday, April 08, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Lawmakers Look To Keep 10-Year-Olds Out Of Jail
Thursday, April 04, 2019

Property Tax Workshops Help Homeowners Appeal Assessments
Wednesday, April 03, 2019
Evanston RoundTable

Large crowds of Evanston residents turn out to appeal property tax assessments
Tuesday, April 02, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Family of slain cabbie accuses Cook County state's attorney's office of dodging FOIA request
Monday, April 01, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Property Tax Appeal Seminar Set For New Trier Township Residents
Monday, April 01, 2019
Journal and Topics Online

all news items

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