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Stroger Announces Blue Ribbon Committee on Health Services

Thursday, May 03, 2007
Cook County President’s office

Panel to review, approve and oversee financial restructuring plan for hospitals and departments under purview of Cook County Bureau of Health Services.
Chicago, May 3, 2007 – Cook County Board President Todd Stroger today announced the formation of a blue ribbon committee charged with reviewing and approving the financial restructuring plan proposed for the Cook County Bureau of Health Services. Once the plan is endorsed by the committee, they also will have oversight to ensure that the plan is followed.

“Given Cook County’s current financial crisis, we need to be creative and inclusive as we evaluate our challenges and look for answers,” said President Stroger. “The individuals who have agreed to serve on this committee bring excellent credentials and a wealth of combined experience in both finance and public hospital management. I am confident that their input, along with the corrective measures already being exercised by the current leadership in the Bureau, will help us improve our fiscal condition.”

Members of the committee include Larry J. Goodman, MD, President and CEO of Rush Medical Center; Kathleen K. DeVine, President and CEO of St. Anthony Hospital; David S. Hefner, President of the University of Chicago Medical Center; Catherine A. Jacobson, CPA, Senior Vice President and CFO and Treasurer of Rush Medical Center; Valerie Jarrett, President and CEO of the Habitat Company; and Eric E. Whitaker, MD, MPH, Director of the Illinois Department of Public Health; Richard Jaffee, Chairman of Oil Dri Corporation of America; and Terry Mason, MD, FACS, Commissioner of the Chicago Department of Public Health.

Currently, the Cook County Bureau of Health Services treats more than 1,000,000 patient visits annually, a number that has significantly increased over the past decade. Issues to be addressed in the restructuring plan center around an escalating demand on Cook County’s health care delivery system. Cook County finds itself with a desperate need for an immediate infusion of funds in order to improve patient delivery and access, as well as to upgrade information technology and financial systems within the Cook County Bureau of Health Services.

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