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:  
   
 
 

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.

   
  The Chicago Board of Trade and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange trade 60% of the world futures contracts.
   
     
     
     



Preckwinkle proposes to up spending on Cook County hospital

Thursday, October 18, 2012
Crain's Chicago Business
by Kristen Schorsch

(Crain's) — The Cook County Health and Hospitals System is close to a deal to expand its Medicaid rolls early, a move that could bring in nearly $100 million in annual net revenue but requires boosting spending by the cash-strapped health care network to nearly $1 billion, its highest level in three years.

County health system spending would climb 8 percent, to $966 million for the fiscal year beginning Dec. 1, from $894 million in 2012 according to Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle's proposed 2013 budget, unveiled today. Spending has fallen for two consecutive years amid a cost-cutting campaign.

County officials hope to enroll 115,000 patients into Medicaid before 2014, when the federal health care overhaul expands eligibility for the program for the poor.

To accommodate a surge of new patients, the county health system spending would reach its highest level since 2010, when Ms. Preckwinkle was elected and spending reached $974 million.

The increased spending is justified by the lure of bigger Medicaid revenue and transforming a system in which patients typically wait until they are sick to seek care, costing the system even more money, officials said.

“We're hopeful that over the next several years this can dramatically stabilize our public health system,” Ms. Preckwinkle said during a meeting of the Crain's editorial board on Tuesday.

Yet winning approval from the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for the county's plan has taken longer than county officials expected.

In August, health system CEO Ramanathan Raju predicted that Cook County could start enrolling patients as soon as October.

On Tuesday, Dr. Raju said he expects to win federal approval by the end of this month.

The move would generate $99 million in net revenue, the biggest new revenue contributor to the county's proposed $3 billion 2013 budget and nearly four times the amount of the proposed increase in tobacco taxes.

Although approval is not final, federal officials have agreed to pay the county health system a fixed fee of $627 per Medicaid recipient per month for the crop of new patients, up from roughly $300 per person per month that county officials had earlier projected, Dr. Raju said.

“It's an influx of resources that are desperately need right now, and it's an opportunity for the system to improve itself,” Margie Schaps, executive director of the Chicago-based Health and Medicine Policy Research Group, said of the county's potential Medicaid expansion.

Even at the higher level of reimbursement, county health officials still face the challenge of keeping the costs of care under the fixed fee, because the county is responsible for any cost overruns.

A CMS spokeswoman declined to comment.

The added revenue should help reduce the annual county subsidy for the health system because the federal government would be shouldering more costs for new enrollees, Ms. Preckwinkle said. Under health care reform's Medicaid expansion, CMS would cover 100 percent of the cost of new enrollees until 2016, then 90 percent by 2020 and beyond, according to the Menlo Park, Calif.-based Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

The health system is asking for a $254 million taxpayer subsidy for the 2013 fiscal year. That's in line with the 2012 budgeted subsidy. The amount has decreased every year since at least 2008, when the county health system received a $408 million subsidy, according to the Civic Federation, a Chicago-based fiscal watchdog group.

About 210 people would be hired from nearly 400 vacant positions in the health system to accommodate for the influx of patients if allowed to expand the Medicaid rolls early.



Recent Headlines

Western Springs Board votes to follow county ordinance, raising minimum wage to $11 this year
Tuesday, April 24, 2018
Pioneer Press

Mother files complaint, says while she was at Daley Center for jury duty, staff sent her to men’s room to pump breast milk
Monday, April 23, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Challenge to filing fee has some worth
Monday, April 16, 2018
Chicago Daily law Bulletin

Tougher SNAP rules worry providers
Friday, April 13, 2018
Modern Healthcare

Cook County tax officials take excess campaign donations from appeals firms, ethics panel says
Friday, April 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County’s 'Next Century' Plan To Maintain Forest Preserves
Wednesday, April 11, 2018
WBEZ

What happens when a hospital sells its debt?
Tuesday, April 10, 2018
WWNO New Orleans Public Radio

Federal funds to bolster election security may fall short in Chicago, Cook
Monday, April 09, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

New autopsy rulings bring Cook County cold death total to 31 this season
Thursday, March 29, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Forest Preserves of Cook County Summer Day Camp Registration Opens April 2
Thursday, March 29, 2018
Special to suffredin.org

Cook County sues Facebook, Cambridge Analytica after alleged misuse of millions of Illinoisans' data
Monday, March 26, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Unsung Heroine Award to Emily Guthrie
Wednesday, March 21, 2018
Evanston Roundtable

Editorial: In four letters, why people leave Cook County: J-O-B-S
Wednesday, March 21, 2018
Chicago Tribune

In a twist, Cook County wins $9 million verdict tied to jail strip-search settlement
Tuesday, March 20, 2018
Chicago Tribune

15 got promotions from Court Clerk Dorothy Brown within 6 months of donations
Friday, March 16, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Assessor Berrios loses court fight to overturn Cook County's limits on campaign donations
Wednesday, March 14, 2018
Chicago Tribune

$70 million and counting? Cook County taxpayers face massive tab for sheriff board firings
Wednesday, March 14, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Commentary: Dart's misguided approach to jail reform
Monday, March 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Editorial: Commissioners: Shelve this Cook County job killer
Monday, March 12, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County alerting investors, delinquent property taxpayers of coming tax sale
Friday, March 09, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

all news items

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