Chicago’s Mental Health System Is Failing – What Must Be Done

At the time of the City’s mental health clinic closings in 2012, the Chicago Department of Public Health claimed the move would boost efficiencies, result in high-quality care, and make services available for the uninsured. HDA’s analysis shows these predictions were not borne out:

This decline in service happened despite CDPH’s increased investment of Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) dollars between 2011 and 2015.

What's Wrong With This Picture?

The Governor’s proposed $87 million reduction in mental health grants, along with cuts in Medicaid, will devastate an already fragile mental health system in Chicago. It is crucial to address the quality of care being provided to patients and the fact that increasing financial investments aren’t improving services.

We call on Mayor Emanuel and CDPH Commissiner Dr. Julie Morita to stabilize and restore the City’s mental health services. Specifically:

In tough fiscal times all stakeholders must pull together and focus on doing what each does best. CDPH does an excellent job of convening partners and supporting agencies proficient in their respective areas. It does not, however, do a good job of providing clinical mental health services. Chicagoans need access to quality mental health services and supports.

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