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New pediatric mobile medical unit breaks down barriers to quality care for kids

November 11, 2015

November 11, 2015

Today, thousands of children across Chicago’s South Side who lack access to quality healthcare have a new ally. A new University of Chicago Medicine Comer Children’s Hospital Mobile Medical Unit is now on the road, thanks to a generous donation from the Children’s Health Fund (CHF) and the Morgan Stanley Foundation.

The new mobile clinic was revealed during a ribbon cutting ceremony Nov. 10, at Excel Academy High School in Chicago’s South Shore neighborhood. This state-of-the-art, 38-foot doctor’s office on wheels is equipped with the most advanced clinical equipment and resources available in a mobile health setting. The Mobile Medical Unit will allow the Comer Children’s staff to visit more schools and offer a broader range of services including primary care, mental health services, acute care, chronic illness management and health education.

"Every child deserves the best possible chance at life, and well equipped mobile clinics … can turn these chances into true change."

“With this new mobile medical clinic, we’ll continue providing a critical safety net for families who often experience a myriad of challenges navigating a complex, fragmented health care system,” said Icy Cade-Bell, MD, medical director of the Mobile Medical Unit. “We’re tremendously grateful for the generous support of the Morgan Stanley Foundation and the Children’s Health Fund. It will allow us to enhance the level of medical, psychological and social services we can offer.”

“At Children’s Health Fund, we have a long-standing commitment to helping schools and parents address health barriers to learning,” said Irwin Redlener, MD, president and co-founder of Children’s Health Fund. “A recent health assessment of children in Chicago’s South Side communities revealed nearly 40 percent experience difficulty accessing health care. Every child deserves the best possible chance at life, and well equipped mobile clinics, made possible by our wonderful partner Morgan Stanley, can turn these chances into true change.”

“Morgan Stanley has a long standing commitment to ensuring that more children in our communities around the world receive the medical support they need to get a healthy start in life,” said Steve Austin, managing director with Morgan Stanley and Midwest regional director for Morgan Stanley Wealth Management. “We are delighted to launch this new mobile medical clinic and hopeful that Children’s Health Fund and Comer Children’s Hospital will now be able to provide more of Chicago’s underserved youth with the healthcare services they need.”

Comer Children’s new mobile medical clinic replaces the aging unit that has served South Side schools for more than a decade. In 2014, the Mobile Medical Unit team provided care at 28 Chicago Public schools resulting in more than 1,400 medical encounters.

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