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Quentin Young/William McNary Chicago Trib Letter to the Editor Re: The CCHHS Interim Board

Health & Medicine Policy Research Group (HMPRG)
November 6, 2009
The Emergency Network to Save Cook CountyHealth Services was among the earliest proponents of an independentcounty health system board, and we too welcome its efforts to create anefficient public health care system ("Don't back down," Editorial, Nov.4).

To do so appropriately, however, is a challenging task given thecomplexities of health care needs and services in this large anddiverse county. The board's fundamental responsibility, as laid out inits establishing ordinance, is to provide universal access to qualityhealth care, regardless of a patient's ability to pay. Consequently,any long-term plan for transformation adopted by the health systemboard must be framed, first and foremost, by its effectiveness inmeeting the health needs of all county residents.

As clearly documented by the board's outside consultants, the demandfor health services in the county exceeds current resources, increasingthe importance of efficient operations. However, efficiency in meetingthat demand means doing more with existing resources, not using fewerresources to do less. Read the entire letter