UI Health opens community clinic in Pilsen

clinic lobby

The UI Health Pilsen Family Health Center Lower West opened Oct. 3. ­(Photo: Vibhu S. Rangavasan)

The University of Illinois Hospital & Health Sciences System opened the doors to a new community health center Oct. 3 in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood.

The UI Health Pilsen Family Health Center Lower West provides families and individuals of all ages with comprehensive health care from immunizations and physical exams to prenatal care and complex medical care. The 6,400-square-foot renovated facility features nine exam rooms and a laboratory for blood draws and basic testing.

“Providing quality patient care is at the core of UI Health’s mission, and we are particularly proud to work with the Pilsen community to ensure that its residents are being cared for close to home,” said Robert Barish, vice chancellor for health affairs.

The new center is located in the heart of the Pilsen community on Chicago’s Lower West Side, near the intersection of Ashland Avenue and 18th Street.

“The University of Illinois at Chicago has a longstanding reputation for excellence in patient care and research, and I am delighted to welcome an academic medical center of UI Health’s caliber to our dynamic and diverse community in Pilsen,” said 25th Ward Alderman Danny Solis.

About 43,000 people live in Pilsen, and well over half are Hispanic, primarily Mexican-American. Findings from the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos — the largest health study of Hispanics/Latinos in the U.S. to date ­— show that this diverse population has a unique set of health risk factors for diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and kidney disease.

“By opening this center, we hope to have a positive impact on treatment and prevention specific to the needs of the Pilsen community,” Barish said.

George Cardenas, chair of the Chicago Committee on Health & Environmental Protection said, “Expanding access to quality care in Chicago is necessary for improving the health of our communities. This is particularly true of the underserved and underinsured communities in the Pilsen and surrounding neighborhoods that are predominantly Hispanic, African American and Chinese American.”

The Pilsen health center joins the University Village Clinic at Maxwell Street as the second community-based clinic operated by UI Health.

“UI Health is committed to being a partner to the Chicago community, and we are very interested in being better connected to our neighbors in Pilsen,” said Avijit Ghosh, CEO of the UI Hospital. “We will initially offer family medicine and primary care services, but as we learn more about the health care needs of the Pilsen community, we will plan for future service lines and specialties.”

The center is staffed by eight full-time employees and bilingual, board-certified family medicine physicians. Clinical staff have expertise in primary care, preventive care and women’s health — including prenatal care and delivery — and the care of newborns and children.

The center also provides care for acute illnesses, such as asthma attacks, allergic reactions and broken bones, and chronic illnesses like diabetes, heart disease, depression and cancer. The center offers office procedures for skin, joint, foot and women’s health.

The clinic is open weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Patients can make an appointment by calling 866-600-CARE.

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