SOUTH HOLLAND | The Christian Community Health Center is beginning work to expand two facilities it operates in the south suburbs.
Officials on Monday held a groundbreaking ceremony for the addition to their facility at 901 E. Sibley Blvd. in South Holland, with Village President Don De Graff saying the new health care center would be a benefit to the community. It is at the site of the former Thornridge State Bank.
This groundbreaking comes just days after officials in Calumet City held a similar event on Friday to mark the renovation of a facility at 364 Torrence Ave. State Rep. Thaddeus Jones, who also is an alderman in Calumet City, said his hometown needs all the medical providers it can get.
“We need it bad,” Jones said. “Having access to health care is critical in our community.”
The Christian Community Health Center, which also plans to expand its health care facility on 9718 S. Halsted St., in Chicago’s Roseland neighborhood, said it has wanted to expand its facilities since 2009.
But it was only in the past year the group was able to secure federal and state grants to help pay for the project. Jones said the state thus far has kicked in $1.2 million, and could provide another $1 million during the upcoming year.
Ken Burnett, the health center’s CEO, said the expansion is needed because of the federal Affordable Care Act that requires people to have some form of health insurance.
He said with more people insured, they will be more likely to seek medical treatment when they are ill.
“The Affordable Care Act is going to increase the demand for health care, and we want to be ready to accommodate patients when they come to us seeking help,” Burnett said.
Work on the Roseland neighborhood facility has been underway, and Burnett said the expanded facility should be complete by May. Both of the suburban facilities will see work begin in coming weeks, and Burnett said officials are hopeful the expanded facilities will be open by late September.
De Graff said he likes the idea of new construction taking place within his community and he is particularly pleased to see it is a health care facility being operated by Christian organizations.
“I believe there is no better way of providing these services than from a Christian perspective,” De Graff said. “This project gets me really excited, and I’m glad to be on hand to begin the process.”