City and County Leaders Pledges Support for Safety-Net Hospitals

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - HealthMedicaid reform and its potential impacts on community hospitals took center stage at an annual legislative breakfast at Norwegian American Hospital. Those present, including Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart, Cook County Commissioner Eddie Reyes and Alderman Ray Suarez, urged for special consideration of safety-net hospitals as legislators work to fix the state’s broken Medicaid system.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle were unable to attend but sent letters on their behalf. Preckwinkle stressed that “it is essential that we strengthen the safety-net hospital network in Cook County in order for it to continue to serve people in need,” while Emanuel pledged that he and his office “will look to ways to aid and advocate for viable solutions to improving the Medicaid system in Illinois and ensuring that reforms to the already burdened system do not create healthcare deserts across our city.”

Norwegian American Hospital President and CEO José R. Sánchez called on the state to act accordingly. “Safety-net hospitals drive their local economies and are beacons of quality care in their communities,” he said.

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