Nominators named for hospital board
Friday, March 21, 2008
by STEVE PATTERSON
There was a healthy dose of skepticism Thursday about just how independent and nonpolitical the new board will be that will soon govern the Cook County hospital system.
But when the 14 people who will oversee the selection process were introduced, they ended up being a well-respected bunch, representing health care, unions and civic groups.
Richard Sewell, of the Illinois Public Health Association, will chair the selection committee, while Dr. Larry Goodman, head of Rush University Medical Center, will serve as vice chairman.
The committee will come up with 20 nominees by April 20, presenting them to Cook County Board President Todd Stroger -- who will narrow that list to nine.
Those nine will then go before the County Board, which must approve them before they can take control of the system.
Though many continue to be wary of Stroger's willingness to cede control of a hospital system that has long been a dumping ground for patronage hires, he gave an impassioned speech committing himself to it.
Calling it a "dysfunctional" system in need of help, he asked committee members to "guard the door against lobbyists, special interests and those hungry for control who want to sway the system for their own personal gain."