Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HR0352
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Full Text of HR0352  97th General Assembly




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2    WHEREAS, The Cook County Board created the Cook County
3Health & Hospitals System (CCHHS) Board of Directors in 2008,
4and the ordinance creating that board originally provided that
5the ordinance would be repealed in 2011; and
6    WHEREAS, The Cook County Board voted June 1, 2010 to
7eliminate the sunset clause in the ordinance that established
8the independent Cook County Health & Hospitals System Board of
9Directors, so that it is now a permanent oversight authority;
11    WHEREAS, The CCHHS oversees healthcare operations and
12policy implementation for the health system of Cook County,
13establishes priorities for the health care delivery system, and
14is intended to operate so as to improve the efficiency and
15delivery of health care to the residents of Cook County; and
16    WHEREAS, The CCHHS Board of Directors issued the Vision
172015 Strategic Direction (July 2010) that includes a plan to
18discontinue inpatient, emergency, and rehabilitation services
19at the south suburban Oak Forest Hospital; and
20    WHEREAS, Many patients, caregivers, and community members
21have voiced opposition to the plan to discontinue Oak Forest



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1Hospital; opponents claim that these cuts in service severely
2reduce the accessibility and affordability of health care for
3many uninsured Chicagoland residents, that this plan would send
4patients to other health facilities in the County that do not
5have the capacity to serve these additional patients, and that
6the plan poses a significant burden to many area residents who
7would have longer travel time and scheduling problems in their
8use of more distant and crowded facilities; and
9    WHEREAS, The CCHHS Board of Directors has already taken
10steps that will jeopardize the ability of Oak Forest Hospital
11to provide essential health services in the community without
12adequate preparation and assurance that area residents will be
13able to obtain accessible and affordable care; and
14    WHEREAS, The Illinois Health Facilities and Services
15Review Board has recommended denial of the application to
16discontinue the current operation of Oak Forest Hospital,
17finding that (1) the proposed closure of Oak Forest Hospital
18will increase the number of intensive care and long-term care
19beds needed in the planning area; (2) while the hospitals in
20the planning area have stated they will accommodate the
21inpatient workload of Oak Forest Hospital, there has been no
22indication by hospitals in the planning area assuming the
23outpatient workload of Oak Forest Hospital and concerns still
24remain of a capacity crunch in the area upon the closure of Oak



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1Forest Hospital; (3) while the County has provided a 5-year
2strategic plan for Oak Forest Hospital and has stated that an
3immediate care facility will replace the emergency department
4effective June 1, 2011 and outpatient specialty services will
5be provided on the campus, funding is only assured for the
6first year, FY 2011; (4) information and data to document the
7need to discontinue the facility has been provided by the
8County, however the proposed discontinuation will increase the
9number of ICU and long-term care beds in the planning areas and
10it is also unclear as to how the residents of the planning area
11will have access to care should the Regional Outpatient Center
12not be funded by the County; and (5) given the large number of
13safety net patients Oak Forest Hospital provides service for,
14it does appear that the proposed discontinuation will have an
15adverse impact on the access to care in the service area; and
16    WHEREAS, The recommendation of the CCHHS Board of Directors
17contravenes the critical health interests of the residents of
18the Chicagoland Area, and this means there is substantial
19reason to believe that it has not shown sufficient expertise
20and concern in carrying out its mission, especially in
21preserving essential health services in underserved areas of
22the City of Chicago; therefore, be it



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1we recommend that the Cook County Board restore the repeal date
2of the county ordinance that created the CCHHS Board of
3Directors; and be it further
4    RESOLVED, That the Cook County Board secure funding for the
5continued operation of Oak Forest Hospital to the capacity that
6shall provide the essential health services for the community
7that depends on it for affordable, accessible medical care; and
8be it further
9    RESOLVED, That the Attorney General review the status of
10Oak Forest hospital in terms of compliance with the Illinois
11Health Facilities Planning Act given the denial of the
12application to discontinue Oak Forest Hospital by the Illinois
13Health Facilities and Services Review Board; and be it further
14    RESOLVED, That suitable copies of this resolution be
15provided to the President and each member of the Cook County