Cook County Health Board of Director's Meeting
September 29, 2023 Virtual and In-person Meeting
CEO Israel Rocha, Chief Operating Officer, and staff presented departmental metrics and a third quarter update to Strategic Initiatives for the Cook County Department of Public Health. The Strategic Plan for 2023-2025 was introduced in April 2023 and critical ones were included in each area’s Metrics Review.
Highlighted in CEO Rocha’s presentation to the Board was an update by Dr. Urjeet Patel, Interim Medical Director of the CCH Cancer Center, on the Cancer Center Service Line. The presentation reflected incorporation of the Strategic Initiatives introduced earlier in the year. With a Mission to provide the highest quality, integrated care across the cancer care continuum for the community served; to create a comprehensive cancer institute through clinical and operational leadership alignment to serve as a fundamental pillar of the Change Institute of Cook County Health with health equity, state of the art care, patient safety, clinical excellence, and patient-centered experience. The six areas identified to incorporate the Cancer Care Continuum were:
Director Reiter talked of a future plan for a master RFP process where all 3 contracts will be consolidated into one contract. Ms. Amos expressed concern that without this plan, CCH Human Resources will be unable to maintain the recruiting activity needed for the Health System.
CEO Rocha also noted that CCH’s Stroger Hospital has been named the #1 most racially inclusive hospital in Illinois and #2 most racially inclusive hospital in the nation by the Lown Institute Hospitals Index. Cermak Health Services earned accreditation by the National Commission on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC).
What to Watch for in the Future:
A description of how the plan mentioned by Director Reiter for a master RFP process would work and whether it would address the issue of multiple contracts targeting one initiative.
Observers: Peg Moster and Susan Avila – Finance Report
Cook County Health (CCH) Board Meeting
August 26, 2022
Cook County Health CFO Cassara presented the 3-year financial forecast which supports the 2023-2025 Strategic Plan approved earlier this year. It was developed in concert with the proposed FY2023 CCH budget which was also approved at today's meeting.
Accrual basis budgets show a deficit of $41M for 2023; $48M for 2024 and $47M for 2025. CFO Cassara commented that closing these “deficits will require management interventions”.
Support to the Health System from Cook County totals $228M in 2023 including $80M CCH pension allocation and $148M Cook County tax allocation for health services, correctional and public health departments.
Cook County Health Heart Institute:
Observer - Susan Kern, MD
Cook County Health (CCH) Board of Directors Meeting
May 27, 2022
During Public Comments, eight nurses and nurse representatives reacted to the Cook County Commissioners 10% pay raise approved by the CC Board earlier in May. The comments were pointed and the tone angry. For two months nurses have been asking for a $5.00 per hour increase as Retention Compensation for their work and their loyalty over the past two years of the COVID pandemic, noting that the System is hiring contract nurses at much higher pay. They are also unhappy that they must use personal sick pay for personal COVID absences.
Having been discussed at several previous meetings, the proposed 2023-25 Strategic Plan was approved by the board with little comment. The Theme for the next three years is: Impact, Change, Equity. Strategic Planning Officer, Andrea Gibson, noted that the data table will now include the years 2019-21 and also stated that Disability Access has been moved to a higher priority based upon public feedback. With approval, the next steps include developing detailed work plans and integrating them into a three-year budget. Chair Taylor commended the process and said it is a very good framework to deliver quality care over the next three years.
Observer: Diane Edmundson
Cook County Health Board (CCH) of Directors Meeting
April 29, 2022
Israel Rocha, CEO and Andrea Gibson, Chief Strategy Officer presented a draft FY23-FY25 Strategic Plan for Board consideration and input.
The presentation evoked a great deal of input from the Board concerning its lofty goals given the ongoing shortage of staff as well as having heard the same goals in years past. This was addressed by CEO Rocha who indicated that although it was currently necessary to continue using agency nurses while they continued their ongoing efforts on retention and recruitment outlined in the Strategic Plan. Further, he referenced an announcement made on April 26 by himself, President Preckwinkle, Commissioners Deer and Lowry, and the County Health Foundation of a $1M Provident Scholarship Fund to support students who are from, and committed to caring for, underserved communities. The Fund will administer 60 scholarships this summer as follows:
CEO Rocha announced that the 1 millionth dose of COVID vaccine was administered on April 28th. It was also reported that the Report Contact Tracing effort was scaling down from 300 staff at its peak to a core of 50 trained tracers while the balance of staff have either left or are being absorbed into other duties. Beyond the immediate goal of tracing, the team increased relationships within the communities through networking and education which is being sustained and expanded.
Item to watch for in the Future: During his presentation CEO Rocha referenced establishing a “Mental Health Authority” to build out the behavioral and mental health footprint throughout the county. He was challenged by several of the Commissioners on the term “Authority” and ceded that it might be an office or department as the Board cannot create an authority which implies a taxing body.
Observed By: Peg Moster
Cook County Health Strategic Plan Town Hall Meeting #2
March 2, 2022
The meeting opened with a welcome and thanks from Israel Rocha. He then turned it over to Andrea Gibson. She gave an overview of CCH’s scope and accomplishments. She next explained the SWOT process to be used to obtain feedback from employees, community, labor, and the CC Board of Commissioners. S=strengths W=weaknesses O=opportunities T=threats.
Cook County Health Strategic Plan Town Hall Meeting #3
March 3, 2022
The Thursday morning virtual meeting began with an introduction by CEO Israel Rocha followed by Chief Strategy Officer, Andrea Gibson, presenting the initial process for the 2023-25 Strategic Plan which included three town halls (one in Spanish) the week of March 1. A survey was sent to Stakeholders using the SWOT process of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. Ms. Gibson stated that no ideas would be presented by CCH at the town hall meetings as the purpose is to gather opinions and suggestions from the Stakeholders and the Public.
General feedback regarding CCH and the Public Health Department included:
3) Create sustainable programs.
4) Increase birthing opportunities - for example "free standing birth centers."
5) Can long term care be made available?
6) Need more health services in the South Suburbs - population not dense but covers a
wide area – therefore, it is not easy to get to CCH health care sites.
7) Increased emphasis on the fact that "housing is health care".
8) Role out a #988 phone number for crisis calls.
9) Incorporate "peer support groups" into county services particularly for addition and
3) Medicaid application process for immigrants.
4) Turnover of nursing staff. It was stated by a speaker that 50% of the current nursing
staff is from outside contractors.
5) Length of time needed to fill positions - particularly nursing.
Observer: Diane Edmundson
Cook County Health (CCH) Board Meeting
February 25, 2022
The timeline for the FY23-FY25 Strategic Plan introduced
Managed Care Committee
Human Resources Committee
Quality and Patient Safety Committee
Observed by: Michele Niccolai
Individual authors are credited at the end of each report.