As is well known, Chicagoans on the Southside are adversely affected by diseases and medical conditions which, if detected earlier and treated with best practices, would produce more patient outcomes akin to other parts of Illinois. The CRHI intends to remove systemic barriers on the Southside that have created a life expectancy 5-10 years shorter than in other areas of Chicago and Cook County. Even more alarming, as a recent study just revealed, black Chicagoans experience 3,800 excess deaths a year. Said differently, if Black Chicagoans died at the same rate as the rest of the United States, 3,800 lives would be saved every year.
These barriers, also known as the social determinates of health, are why the corona virus has hit this community with higher rates of hospitalization and mortality than the US average. The answer is the Southside community coming together to take ownership of it’s own health outcomes.
The CRHI is built on four pillars:
- All activities are led and directed by community-based organizations that make up the Collaborative. The model depends on advice and council of collaborating partners and all partners fully committed to health outcomes, not healthcare revenue.
- Concierge nurses and team of community health workers provide integrated care and remove social determinate of health barriers.
- Technology to share health information, conduct virtual visits and provide one-click communication to the patient and the entire clinical team.
- Community awareness for major categories of known mortality: COVID-19, hypertension, diabetes, cancer and gun violence.
Success is determined by mortality and life expectancy. These are the metrics that are drastically different from one community to another in the Chicago area. Race, poverty and access to care play the biggest role. The proposal will break down life expectancy into current health metrics like weight and cholesterol to monitor health changes within the population.
The proposal is a pilot project designed to show efficacy from a new way of delivering healthcare. The pilot has chosen specific patient conditions to target and residents in a specific geography within the Chicago Southside.
The collaborators to the project:
- MATCCH Foundation is run by Isaac Palmer, Black born in Calumet City, who possesses over 20 years of hospital executive leadership experience, much of which is in Chicago.
- Premier Health Network is run by Dr. Michael McGee who owns and operates the only Black-owned urgent care on the Chicago Southside.
- EagleForce is a Black-owned technology company that offers physician practice solutions for telemedicine and shared electronic medical records.
- The Church of God in Christ (Northern Illinois Jurisdiction) operates several Black churches within Illinois, 7 of which are in the pilot geography.
- Other collaborators: Cook County Physician Association, US Minority Contractors Association, NYCE Group for Women
- Letters of Support: NAACP Chicago Southside Branch, Chicago Urban League, 100 Black Men of Chicago, Equity and Transformation Chicago, P.O.P. Youth Violence Prevention, State Rep. Curtis Tarver
This is a proposal that recognizes the current inequities, galvanizes the community and creates a living organization that will relentlessly attach the inequities until Blacks on the Southside are living healthy lives. We know this because Blacks will run the pilot. Not institutions. Not politicians. The community organizations that residents worship and socialize will oversee every aspect of this pilot.