Rush Commemorates MLK With Day of Service

Rush's day of service includes collecting items for U.S. military personnel serving overseas.

Rush’s day of service includes collecting items for U.S. military personnel serving overseas.

Rush University students and staff will commemorate Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday through a day of service on Monday, Jan. 21. Students from each of Rush’s collegesRush Medical College, the  College of Nursing, the Graduate College and the College of Health Sciences — will participate in services throughout the day, including the following:

  • Collect toiletries and snack food at Rush for U.S. military personnel serving overseas.
  • Prepare breakfast for the people being helped at Franciscan House of Mary and Joseph at 2715 W. Harrison St., Chicago at 3 a.m.
  • Entertain patients and their families at the Ronald McDonald House at 5444 S. Drexel Ave. in Hyde Park, Chicago at 9:30 a.m. Continue reading

Supporting Health Care in Haiti, Dominican Republic

Art for Haiti — an evening of music, art, food and Haitian culture — supports health care missions to Haiti and the Dominican Republic.

Jennifer Towbin, MD, a primary care physician at Rush University Medical Center, was on a humanitarian trip to Haiti with the Global Health Program at Rush when a little girl jumped into her arms. The 7-year-old Haitian had never met the doctor, but the promise of health care prompted an exuberant greeting.

The girl’s family was afraid she might have lymphoma. Through the network of physicians at the Global Health Program at Rush, Towbin got her a biopsy that cleared up any fears. Dr. Towbin’s young patient is without both of her parents and proper schooling, but she has her health.

There are countless similar stories, Towbin says, and it’s partly why she’s so passionate about her work with the program, which made its first trip to Haiti 10 days following an earthquake there in January 2010 that left 316,000 people dead and 1 million without homes.

“Everybody should be able to receive health care. I don’t know why I would be deserving of health care just because I was born in the United States and not in Haiti or the Dominican Republic,” said Towbin, who makes trips along with colleagues from Rush to Haiti every six months. “It’s important to me to provide health care to people who otherwise wouldn’t have access to it.”

The Global Health Program at Rush exists in part due to help from fundraising events such as Art for Haiti, an evening of music, art, food and Haitian culture. This year’s event is Friday, Sept. 14, from 6 to 10 p.m. at the Zhou B. Art Center (1029 W. 35th St., Chicago).

Rush partners with Wetzstein + Hosek Creative to raise funds to support the work in Haiti and the Dominical Republic. Doctors, nurses, students, residents and many others, all primarily from Rush, have been providing medical care to Haiti for 2 ½ years and to the Dominican Republic for more than seven years.

Artwork at Art for Haiti is auctioned and used to raise funds and awareness not only for Haiti but also the Dominical Republic. The proceeds go directly to support medical and community work in Haiti. For more information or to order tickets, please visit http://artforhaitibenefit.org/.

International Award for Innovative Health Clinic

Rush’s school-based health center at the Simpson Academy for Young Women.

This past fall, Rush University’s College of Nursing began its third school-based health center, at the Chicago Public Schools’ Simpson Academy for Young Women, with hopes of addressing health care issues of pregnant and parenting youth.

Less than one year later, the clinic’s innovative efforts are recognized internationally.

The health center at Simpson Academy, a school for pregnant women and young mothers, received an International Connecting Nurses Care Challenge Award for its innovation in addressing health care issues of pregnant and parenting youth. The center is operated by faculty and staff from Rush University’s College of Nursing.

Rush is one of 10 winners in the Helping Hands category and one of only two organizations from the U.S. to be honored by Connecting Nurses, which is an affiliate of the International Council of Nurses and the Nurse Practitioner Healthcare Foundation. The award was announced in May in Geneva at the World Congress of Francophone Nurses.

This is an outstanding achievement for a health center that has been established for a short period of time,” said Marilyn Wideman, DNP, RN, associate dean of faculty practice and community engagement at Rush University. “This is well-deserved for the practitioners, clinic staff and students at Rush who work and volunteer at the Simpson Academy.”

The health clinic at the Simpson Academy, which opened in fall 2011, is one of three school-based health centers at Chicago Public Schools that is run by Rush College of Nursing.

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Rush Provides $220 Million in Community Benefits

The majority of Rush’s community investment, more than $143 million, covered costs for unreimbursed but much needed care that Rush provides to its patients.

Rush University Medical Center and its affiliated Rush Oak Park Hospital provided more than $220 million in community benefits in fiscal year 2011 — an increase of roughly $20 million from the previous year.

The majority of Rush’s investment in the community, more than $143 million, covered costs for unreimbursed but much needed care that Rush provides to its patients. That includes charity care and financial assistance, which totaled more than $18 million, and subsidized care for Medicare and Medicaid patients, which totaled more than $86 million. Rush is among the top 10 hospital providers of Medicaid days in the state. Nearly $39 million were attributed to expected payments that were not made for health services provided by Rush, also known as forgiven or bad debt.

Rush provided nearly $43 million to support the education and training of future physicians, nurses and allied health workers since tuition and grants do not cover all the costs. In addition, the Medical Center provided more than $18 million to subsidize the costs of biomedical research not covered by private and federal grants.

Rush is able to provide this level of community benefits because it is a not-for-profit organization. Rush reinvests any revenues in excess of expenses back into the organization for needed facilities, equipment and new program support, as well as the activities described above and in its Community Benefits report.

Read the entire news release and Rush’s 2012 community benefits report.

Free Health Services at Annual Spring Fair

Health services being administered at last year's Spring Into Health and Fitness Fair.

Free health services, including screenings, school physicals, immunizations and health counseling, will be administered to underserved Chicagoans at the eighth annual Rush University Medical Center Spring Into Health and Fitness Fair on Saturday, March 31, beginning at 9 a.m. at the Instituto Health Sciences Career Academy, a high school in the Pilsen neighborhood at 2520 S. Western Ave. Registration closes at 12:30 p.m.

RU Caring, Rush University’s student-run organization, and Rush University Medical Center, collaborate with local sponsors to provide better access to health care for underserved communities from across the city of Chicago. Organizers hope to reach more than 1,000 people with services at the fair.

The Spring Into Health and Fitness Fair offers free physical health screenings, immunizations, dental and vision assessments and mental health services. Blood glucose, blood pressure and body mass index screenings are performed at the fair.

Rush students from a wide range of disciplines are participating, including medicine, nursing, occupational therapy, audiology, health systems management and clinical laboratory sciences. The students will work under the supervision of Rush attending physicians, nurse practitioners, professional nursing staff and faculty.

Read the entire news release.

Rush Renews Support of Malcolm X College

Rush University

Rush University Medical Center is providing resources, from equipment donations to clinical rotations and guest lecturers, to nearby Malcolm X College (MXC) in support of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s new College to Careers program, which has been established to ensure Chicago residents are prepared for jobs in high-growth industries.

Rush, which has been partnering with MXC since 2008, is helping to train people for jobs in the health sciences that are available now but remain unfilled due to a skills gap. The agreement allows MXC students to gain valuable experience at Rush through clinical rotations, career ladder programs and other initiatives that had already been in place.

City Colleges are key to Chicago’s economic viability,” said Dr. Larry Goodman, CEO, Rush University Medical Center. “This initiative is crucial not only because it will help ensure a pipeline of qualified workers in the health and medical field, but because we must all contribute  as corporate citizens to ensure that Chicago is a winner as more cities and countries vie for relevance in the world economy.”

MXC students will receive hands-on learning at the cadaver lab at Rush, and they have an opportunity to participate in clinical rotations at Rush in radiology, respiratory care, surgical technology, nursing and emergency medicine.

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Rush Opens Health Clinic at Simpson Academy

Ribbon-cutting at the Simpson Academy for Young Women.

Chicago city officials, and executives from Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and Rush University Medical Center came together Friday, Jan. 27, at the Simpson Academy for Young Women, a school for pregnant women and young mothers, to mark the third school-based health center operated by the College of Nursing at Rush.

The ribbon-cutting at the Simpson Academy, which is located at 1321 S. Paulina St., was attended by Rush CEO Dr. Larry J. Goodman, CPS CEO Jean-Claude Brizard, Cook County Commissioner Robert Steele, Simpson Academy principal Joi Kidd-Stamps, Alderman Walter Burnett of the 27th Ward, Alderman Bob Fioretti of the 2nd Ward and others.

The Simpson Academy is a small school serving grades six to 12 that accepts students from throughout Chicago. Nurse practitioners from Rush and students from Rush’s College of Nursing provide on-site health and educational services. They also provide services for infants at a daycare center at the school. The aim is to help mothers and expecting mothers remain focused on schoolwork.

This special health service provides an additional type of support to keep these girls on a solid academic track,” said Sally Lemke, RN, an instructor at the Rush College of Nursing at Rush and the lead health care provider at the clinic. “So many of the girls were missing school because of prenatal visits or physical complaints related to their pregnancies. The hope is to increase the attendance rates.”

The health services at the clinic encompass primary care, prenatal care, school and sports physicals and contraceptive services. There is also a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner to provide one-on-one and group sessions with students. A family nurse practitioner provides infants with well-child care, urgent care and immunizations, among other services.

Read the entire news release.