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A message from Sinai Health System President and CEO on AHCA ending Medicaid expansion

The following is a statement from Karen Teitelbaum, Sinai Health System president and CEO.

 

For nearly a century, Sinai Health System has been the largest provider of health care for many vulnerable, low income patients in Illinois who might otherwise have limited access to quality care.  We wear that proudly, believing that every Illinoisan deserves ready access to needed services, not just those people who do not face challenges that we see in our communities, such as violence, chronic disease or unemployment.  Every. Illinoisan

We’ve seen significant benefits to our patients and our community that have come from the expansion of the Medicaid program in Illinois under the Affordable Care Act. Close to half of our patients who were previously uninsured are now covered by the Medicaid program.  What does this mean in reality? This means that they have greatly improved access to health care, including treatment for behavioral health, addiction and chronic illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease. 

Despite the health and societal benefits seen by our neighbors, patients, and friends who participate in the current Medicaid program, the American Health Care Act which was just passed by the U.S. House of Representatives ends the Medicaid expansion in 2020 and cuts over $800 billion in funds for other Medicaid services.

These cuts will be devastating to the communities we serve.  It’s just that simple. So today, I want to be sure that you know that Sinai’s 4,000 caregivers and our many partners join with other health care providers and patient organizations throughout Illinois and the country to advocate for continuation of the Medicaid expansion and against any cuts to vital Medicaid funds.

We’ve been here for 100 years, and we will be here for our community long past today.  Let’s not go backwards in all the social and health progress that we’ve made in building vibrant communities through access to care.  Let’s look forward, together.

About Sinai Health System

Located on Chicago’s West and Southwest Side, Sinai Health System is comprised of Mount Sinai Hospital, Holy Cross Hospital, Schwab Rehabilitation Hospital, Sinai Children’s Hospital, Sinai Community Institute, Sinai Medical Group, and Sinai Urban Health Institute.

The entities of Sinai Health System collectively deliver a full range of quality outpatient and inpatient services, as well as a large number of innovative, community-based health, research and social service programs. We focus our collective depth of expertise and passion to improve the health of the 1.5 million people who live in our diverse service area. With our team of dedicated caregivers, Sinai Health System is committed to building stronger, healthier communities.

 

Media contact:

Dianne Hunter

Director of Public Relations and Communication

773.257.5228

dianne.hunter@sinai.org