(CHICAGO) – At the rate the virus is spreading, January will be the deadliest month of COVID-19 in the United States, with minority communities shouldering the brunt of the consequences. Community leaders, South Side clergy, and healthcare providers in Chicago are urging legislators not to wait to put more healthcare resources into these communities. Now is the time to recognize the disparities, and do something about it.
There is an opportunity RIGHT NOW during the lame-duck session of the Illinois General Assembly, which started on January 8 and ends January 13, to allocate transformation funds driving towards equity, better access, prevention, health literacy, and, ultimately, a healthier community on Chicago’s South Side. The South Side Health Transformation Project is mobilizing in hopes of accessing part of the $150 million in federal and state dollars allocated for healthcare transformation.
Sadly, the healthcare disparities that exist on the South Side are profound, systemic and growing. The impact that COVID-19 has had on communities of color has only amplified the healthcare situation that has existed on the South Side for far too long as evidenced daily in the numbers who test positive, are hospitalized, and are dying from this insidious virus.
SSHTP priorities are not focused on consolidation, building something new or closing services. Rather, it is collectively focused on using the resources available in the community more effectively and in a much more coordinated and collaborative way while also adding physicians, community healthcare workers, and connectivity to address the needs and issues that matter most in our neighborhoods. For more information about the South Side Health Transformation Project or to find out how you can support the South Side Health Transformation Project, please visit www.southsidehealthtransformation.com.