Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn (D) announced Oct. 23 an investment to help Crusader Community Health acquire and renovate a building for a community health center in Rockford.
The funds, included in Quinn’s Illinois Jobs Now! capital construction program, aims to allow the state to reduce health care spending and save taxpayers money.
“An investment in this community health center in Rockford is an investment in the health and wellness of the people of Winnebago County,” Quinn said. “It is also a critical step in transforming our health care system and ensuring that everyone has access to the services they need.”
Crusader Community Health will receive $3 million to acquire and renovate the former Brookside Clinic building, 1253 N. Alpine Road, in Rockford. The new facility will include 18 exam rooms to provide additional health care services to the residents of Winnebago County.
“Today is a great day for our community,” Gordon Eggers, president and CEO of Crusader Community Health, said. “On behalf of Crusader Community Health, I thank Gov. Quinn for investing $3 million of capital construction funds into Rockford. The grant money will thoughtfully be used to develop the former Brookside Clinic into Crusader’s sixth major facility. The central Rockford location will provide additional access to affordable and high-quality health care for all.”
State Sen. Steve Stadelman, D-Rockford, added: “These funds are an investment in the health and well-being of the people of Winnebago County, particularly those who are underinsured or uninsured. Community health centers such as Crusader are so vital to our community, and the state is committed to the low-income and high-risk patients in the Rockford area.”
The Community Health Center Construction Act, signed by Quinn in 2009, provides funding to repair outdated buildings, convert vacant commercial space, build new health center facilities, and purchase new equipment for additional services such as OB/GYN and dental care. The funds are administered through the state’s Capital Development Board. In addition to providing needed health care facilities, the grants are expected to create about 215 construction jobs.
Community health centers are not-for-profit entities created by Congress to meet the health care needs of underserved communities and high-risk patients. These centers fill a void by providing care for those whom other providers often do not serve, including the low-income, uninsured or homeless; or those with HIV/AIDS, substance abuse problems or special medical needs.
The Community Health Center projects are part of Quinn’s $31 billion Illinois Jobs Now! program, which will support more than 439,000 jobs over six years. Illinois Jobs Now! is the largest construction program in Illinois history, and is one of the largest construction programs in the nation.
Posted Oct. 29, 2014