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:  
   
 
 

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 Hospital fills more outpatient prescriptions every day than are filled at 26 Walgreen's drug store combined.
   
     
     
     



County to fund immigrants' care
Oak Forest patients to be outsourced

Tuesday, June 12, 2007
Chicago Tribune
by Mickey Ciokajlo

Cook County will pay private nursing homes to care for undocumented immigrants who are currently staying at county-owned Oak Forest Hospital under contracts advanced Monday by a committee of the County Board.

County commissioners voted 9-3 to approve two three-year contracts totaling $18.8 million to outsource long-term and intermediate care for those patients. The county receives no state or federal reimbursements for them.
Despite the cost, officials estimate the move will save the county about $10 million a year as part of a significant restructuring in the Bureau of Health Services under board President Todd Stroger's budget that was approved earlier this year.

"This is the rock and the hard place," said Commissioner Jerry Butler (D-Chicago), chairman of the Health and Hospitals Committee that approved the contracts. "It's always difficult to try and do what we are doing now. But unless we do it, we will never know if it will work."

Stroger has also proposed outsourcing janitorial services at Oak Forest Hospital, laying off 96 workers at an estimated annual savings of $1.5 million. Commissioners have so far delayed that effort in hopes of finding another way to achieve the savings, possibly through union concessions.

Dr. Robert Simon, interim chief of the health bureau, said that as part of the plan to close the hospital's 220 long-term-care beds, dozens of the patients for whom the county receives reimbursements have already voluntarily been moved to private nursing homes.

Those patients agreed to be moved even though the county's application to decertify as a long-term-care facility is still pending before the Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board, Simon said.

Oak Forest has about 30 long-term patients who are deemed "unfunded," nearly all of whom are undocumented immigrants, said Sylvia Edwards, the hospital's acting chief operating officer. They came into the county system for reasons such as suffering a traumatic accident or a debilitating work injury.

In addition, the hospital each day provides care for about 30 other undocumented immigrants who are in need of six to eight weeks of intensive therapy but will not remain in the facility long-term.

The two contracts with New York Boys Management LLC advanced Monday would place those unfunded patients in either a nursing home in Bridgeview or another on Chicago's Far South Side.

Commissioner Larry Suffredin (D-Evanston), who voted against the contracts, said he was concerned the county had already moved out some of its patients for whom it received reimbursements at a time when cash flow is a problem. Suffredin also questioned whether the county was placing itself in a position where it would be legally required to pay for the care of the unfunded patients, a cost that could escalate in future years.

"I believe that these contracts will in the end create a greater financial burden on Cook County," Suffredin said.

A separate contract to outsource janitorial services was heard Monday in the Labor Subcommittee, but Chairwoman Joan Murphy (D-Crestwood) did not call for a vote. Murphy said she plans to meet with the union in hopes of saving most of the jobs while still achieving the savings in Stroger's budget.

In other committee action Monday, the state's attorney's office informed the Finance Committee that Stroger's move to extend the reach of his inspector general's investigative powers to cover other countywide elected officials is likely unconstitutional. A Stroger spokeswoman said he is seeking another legal opinion from outside counsel.

Also, the Finance Committee advanced changes to the county ethics code to require the Cook County assessor's office and the Board of Review to post information about property-tax appeals on their Web sites. A separate change to the code would make lobbyists, tax lawyers and zoning lawyers who do business with the county fall under the same campaign contribution limits as other contractors, which is $1,500 annually or $3,000 in an election year.



Recent Headlines

Why some Cook County voters are still waiting for mail-in ballots
Tuesday, October 20, 2020
Daily Herald

Editorial: Impact of COVID-19 emphasizes role of ACA in Cook County budgeting
Tuesday, October 20, 2020
Daily Herald

Cook County tosses ‘lifeline’ to needy residents, opening housing voucher waiting list for first time since 2001
Monday, October 19, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

Coronavirus in Illinois updates: COVID-19 cases on the rise in long-term care facilities; applications open for relief fund for restaurant workers
Monday, October 19, 2020
Chicago Tribune

For first time in nearly 20 years, Cook County opens suburban housing voucher waitlist. At least 10K people already applied.
Monday, October 19, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Editorial: Preckwinkle balances the county’s COVID budget. Next up, Lightfoot.
Monday, October 19, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Gov. J.B. Pritzker blames President Trump and his allies for coronavirus spike in Illinois
Sunday, October 18, 2020
Chicago Tribune

County Board President Toni Preckwinkle outlines $6.9 billion budget plan: ‘This pandemic has dealt Cook County and its residents a catastrophic blow’
Friday, October 16, 2020
Chicago Tribune

Preckwinkle touts restorative justice in budget that slashes court, jail funding: ‘We cannot police our way out’
Friday, October 16, 2020
The Daily Line

‘We Are In a New Wave of COVID-19’: Pritzker
Friday, October 16, 2020
WTTW News

Everything You Need To Know About Voting Drop Boxes In Illinois
Friday, October 16, 2020
WBEZ News

Pritzker Extends Ban on Evictions for 7th Month
Friday, October 16, 2020
WTTW News

Pritzker to extend eviction moratorium another 30 days: ‘Nothing really has changed’
Friday, October 16, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

Record-high Illinois COVID-19 caseload, hospitalizations and positive test rate rising: ‘We are in a new wave
Friday, October 16, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

A Cook County budget built to ‘weather the storm’ — but the rain had better be moving on
Thursday, October 15, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

Layoffs, cutting vacant jobs all part of Preckwinkle’s $6.9 billion budget plan to ride out COVID-19 storm
Thursday, October 15, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

6 more Cook County chief judge’s office employees test positive for COVID-19
Thursday, October 15, 2020
Fox 32 Chicago

Preckwinkle's good-news budget: No tax hikes, minimal layoffs
Thursday, October 15, 2020
Crain's Chicago Business

Politicians renew call to replace Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples Day
Monday, October 12, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

13 more deaths, 2,742 new cases reported as Illinois’ coronavirus positivity rate ticks upward
Monday, October 12, 2020
Chicago Sun-Times

all news items

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