Suffredin- Changing County Government  

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.

  Eighteen of the 20 largest banks in the world and more than 50 foreign banks have offices in Cook County.

County's new top doc sees potential in frayed health system

Tuesday, December 15, 2009
by Alex Parker

After a week on the job, new Cook County Health and Hospitals System chief medical officer Dr. Terry Mason says he sees great potential in the county’s health care system.

The former Chicago Department of Public Health commissioner spent much of his first week visiting county medical facilities and surveying how health care is delivered to county patients.

“The Cook County Health and Hospitals System has an exceptional foundation to expand on going forward. I look forward to working with our CEO Bill Foley, the leadership team and the committed staff throughout our system to repair the cracks that have gone unrepaired up until this point and to restore the level of greatness that is the County health system,” Mason said in a statement issued by the health system.

The health system’s future is up in the air, as independent board members grapple with the long-term consequences of the half-percent sales tax repeal, which will create a $75 million budget gap in 2011. Foley and County Board President Todd Stroger have said recently that both Provident and Oak Forest hospitals could close due to the budget shortfall, though those claims are disputed.

Mason says a key role in his new position will be integrating new ways to improve health care for patients, including continuing its role as a training center, becoming more patient-centric and being more fiscally responsible.

Foley says Mason’s long tenure in Chicago medicine is a boon to the health system.

“His unique combination of medical knowledge, coupled with the deep roots he has planted in this community, has made him a respected voice among many people who walk through our doors,” Foley says.

Mason’s term with CDPH, where he was an ardent advocate for healthy living, was marred by several incidents in the last year.

Last winter, more than a million dollars of medications were found to be expired or stolen from a CDPH warehouse on the North Side.

Mental health advocates have blasted Mason and other city officials for not admitting the role of a flawed computer billing system that led to the decision to close four mental health centers. The centers were eventually allowed to stay open, but billing issues remain.

Mason has a lot to tackle as he takes the helm as the county’s top doc.

Long emergency wait times, patient dissatisfaction, many patients using the ER as a last resort for primary care and an influx of patients from collar counties costing about $50 million a year all complicate the county’s ability to treat patients.

That’s the just a glimpse at the medical side. Health system leaders will have a busy year ahead of them preparing for 2011.

Recent Headlines

Measles Exposure Reported in Chicago
Monday, May 20, 2019

News from the Cook County Health System
Friday, May 17, 2019
Special to

Cook County Health Recognizes Mental Health Awareness Month
Thursday, May 16, 2019
Daily Herald

Skokie plans for road improvements near Edens Expressway: 'It’s desperately needed'
Thursday, May 16, 2019
Skokie Review

5 Chicago hospitals earn D grades for patient safety in new report, Northwestern slips to a B
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Chicago Daily Law Bulletin: Backward Glances
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Cook County Eliminated Its Gang Database, But Advocates Say Harm Continues
Wednesday, May 15, 2019

New Cook County Housing Authority Proposal Targets the 'Missing Middle'
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Evanston RoundTable

Census Citizenship Question Could Hurt Citizens, Noncitizens Alike
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
WBEZ Chicago Public Radio

News from Friends of the Forest Preserves
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Special to

Cook County commissioners get earful about soon-to-be-destroyed gang database
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Detainee dies days after suicide attempt at Cook County jail
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Chicago Sun-Times

Curious City How Chicago Women Created The World’s First Juvenile Justice System
Monday, May 13, 2019
WBEZ Chicago Public Radio

Cook County report: Sharp drop in jail population, but crime did not jump
Friday, May 10, 2019
Injustice Watch

Will Cook County be home to the next big measles outbreak? Researchers think so.
Friday, May 10, 2019
Chicago Tribune

May is Prime Time for Birding in the Forest Preserves of Cook County
Thursday, May 09, 2019
Special to

More Babies Are Illegally Abandoned Than Turned Over Through Illinois’ Safe Haven Law In Cook County
Thursday, May 09, 2019
CBS Chicago

Empty businesses may lose county tax incentives
Wednesday, May 08, 2019
Homewood-Flossmoor Chronicle

As new DCFS report highlights failures, Cook County guardian says 'inept' child welfare agency is ‘not doing its job ... at every level’
Tuesday, May 07, 2019
Chicago Tribune

Cook County passes bill to stop discrimination against tenant applicants
Tuesday, May 07, 2019
Chicago Crusader

all news items

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