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:  
   
 
 

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. … 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

Cook County forest worker was going 76 mph in 30 mph zone, had THC in system during fatal crash while on job: prosecutors
Thursday, July 19, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Judge faces ‘tough day’ in court answering charges he brought loaded gun to work
Thursday, July 19, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Preckwinkle, Evans end budget battle
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

How Transparent and Accountable Are Chicago, Cook County Governments?
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
WTTW Chicago Tonight

2 Cook County courthouses to close, employees spared layoffs under budget settlement: officials
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Troubled detainee at center of unusual court fight between Loyola hospital, Cook County
Monday, July 16, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County Commissioners Confounded by Hiring of Health System Consultant
Monday, July 16, 2018
WBEZ Chicago Public Radio

Doctor fired by Cook County medical examiner now under the microscope in Indiana
Sunday, July 15, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

County officials defend Forest Preserves police in wake of man harassing woman over Puerto Rican flag shirt
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Familiar questions about ‘bystander effect’ arise after man berates woman for Puerto Rico shirt
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Berrios' analysts used Zillow, other shortcuts in assessing property values, documents show
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Northbrook to revisit Cook County paid sick leave policy after opting out last year
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County Forest Preserves officials discuss officer's resignation
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Amid video fallout, Cook County Forest Preserve District reveals fatal crash involving worker and governmental truck
Friday, July 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Transformation in the outdoors
Friday, July 13, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

Forest preserve cop resigns after apparently failing to help woman being harassed over Puerto Rico shirt
Thursday, July 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

5 things: A civics lesson on Puerto Rico after man rants about woman's flag T-shirt, questions citizenship
Thursday, July 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County Commissioners: Get Rid of Forest Preserve Police
Thursday, July 12, 2018
WTTW Chicago Tonight

Schneider wants hearing over fatal crash blamed on Cook forest preserve driver
Thursday, July 12, 2018
Daily Herald

Man who harassed woman for Puerto Rican flag shirt charged with hate crime
Thursday, July 12, 2018
WLS ABC 7 Chicago

all news items

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