Suffredin- Changing County Government  
 

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.
   
     
     
     



Out-Of-County Patients Cost Stroger Hospital $50M
Yearly Drain On Resources Comes From Doctors In Other Areas Sending Patients To Cook County

Friday, November 20, 2009

by Mike Flannery

CHICAGO (CBS) ?They come from miles away for free treatment at Stroger Hospital, and if you live in Cook County, you're paying for it.

And it's not just in Illinois. Doctors and hospitals from all over the Midwest are telling patients without insurance to go to Stroger.

CBS 2 Political Editor Mike Flannery reports on the cost of running a safety net for patients from everywhere.

Aurora housewife Bushra Ayaz has colon cancer. She's now being treated at Stroger Hospital, because, when she sought treatment at hospitals in DuPage and Kane counties, they declined because she has no health insurance.

"The doctors over there, they were saying, 'Oh, you cannot afford the chemo. ... It's very expensive, and we will not give you here,' Ayaz said.

Her sister, Nuzhat Fahim, explains the runaround they received at other hospitals.

"I just felt like a rolling stone," she said. "When we were in a hospital, they sent (us) to another one. And they sent (us) to another one. They said, 'No, you go to Cook County Hospital.'"

She's not alone. CBS 2 has obtained reports showing that about 60,000 patients a year come to Cook County for subsidized health care, costing about $50 million a year.

"Patients will frequently tell us, 'They told me to come to Cook County Hospital,'" Dr. Steven Bowman said.

In 2008, 26,000 patients came from the Collar Counties; 25,000 were from downstate counties; 1,800 came from Indiana; and 5,200 were from other areas.

"It probably didn't start off being the safety net hospital for the whole Midwest," Bowman said. "But de facto, we are the safety net hospital. And it costs money to the provide care as a safety net hospital."

Only the residents of Cook County pay special taxes to support the $874 million health care system here. The system's CEO, Bill Foley, wants to change that.

"It's not fair," he said. "There needs to be a fair mechanism for Cook County to get reimbursed for treating those patients. Ö If the patient can't pay, then I think those other counties should pay."

Stroger Hospital gets the sickest of the sick, who require the most expensive care, veteran emergency room nurses said.

As for getting Illinois's free-loading counties to start paying their fair share of costs for these patients, don't hold your breath. Suzi Schmidt, chair of the north suburban Lake County Board, said officials are willing to discuss the issue, but don't want to pay anything more. A DuPage County Board representative made a similar comment.

As Bushra Ayaz fights for her life, she said she's grateful Stroger Hospital is there.


Recent Headlines

Top prosecutor Kim Foxx apologizes as 18 convictions linked to corrupt cop vacated
Monday, September 24, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Preteens out of detention before trial under new ordinance
Friday, September 14, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Cook County Board bars detention of youth under 13 years old
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Injustice Watch

Preteens accused of crimes won't be locked up at Cook County juvenile center
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Slowik: Cook County offers residents last chance to comment on strategic plan
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Daily Southtown

Settlement over Cook County's 2007 decision to cut inmates' dental care will cost nearly $5.3 million
Wednesday, September 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Anti-patronage Shakman pact requiring federal oversight of Cook County hiring, firing to end
Friday, August 31, 2018
Chicago Tribune

1st District upholds merit board in firing of deputy
Thursday, August 30, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Neighborhood program helps Cook County residents buy homes
Sunday, August 26, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Judge upholds Cook County firearm, ammunition taxes
Thursday, August 23, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Editorial: E-filing should make Cook County courts more accessible. It doesn't
Wednesday, August 22, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County tax incentive could pave way for Wingstop, Dunkin' Donuts on Elgin's Summit Street
Tuesday, August 21, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Editorial: What happened to the elk?
Friday, August 10, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Wells Fargo to offer $15,000 grants to potential Cook County homebuyers
Thursday, August 09, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Suit alleges Cook County detainees secretly monitored in bathrooms in holding cells at courthouses
Wednesday, August 08, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Half the elk at Busse Woods died last year, and officials arenít sure why
Tuesday, August 07, 2018
Chicago Tribune

A letter from Dr. Jay Shannon regarding gun violence and Stroger Hospital
Tuesday, August 07, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

As Evanston adapts to minimum wage hike, nearby towns say they have no plan to join in
Tuesday, August 07, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Lawsuit could blast a $250 million hole in county budget
Monday, August 06, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

Pappas: Automatic refunds of $19.5 million going to 53,000 homeowners because of property tax cuts
Monday, August 06, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

all news items

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