These services are delivered at the community level by grantees of the IDHS. Most often, these are local health departments. Community Health Centers and social service agencies also play an integral role in the delivery of primary and preventive care to pregnant women, mothers, infants, children and adolescents.
Local Health Departments
Local health departments have a unique responsibility to assess needs, develop policy to address community problems and assure that services are delivered to address those problems. Local health departments are also uniquely accountable to the public for the health of the entire community. Consequently, local health departments are well positioned to provide maternal and child health services in their jurisdictions.
Community Health Centers
There are 251 community health centers and federally qualified health centers in Illinois. Community health centers provide a complete array of primary health care services in medically under-served communities. Several are IDHS grantees for these and other programs. The Department is collaborating with Access Community Health Network, a federally funded community health center, and the Chicago Department of Public Health, a federally qualified health center, to implement the Closing the Gap project. Erie Family Health Center, Near North Health Services Corporation and Mile Square Health Center have been partners in the CHSI for many years.
Several prominent community-based organizations in Chicago and suburban Cook County have participated in the FCM program and its predecessors, as well as the WIC program, since the mid-1980s. These organizations bring an extensive knowledge of the communities they serve, are familiar with the cultural diversity of their communities and employ staff who remain sensitive to community needs, beliefs and cultures.