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Client focus: Frank

Frank suffered a traumatic brain injury as a child and has been a patient at one of our medical partner sites ever since. Unfortunately, when Frank was 18 years old, he was in a severe car accident, leaving him with more complex medical issues including severe paraplegia.

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Client Focus: Kiara

Kiara and her daughters Jada and Imani experienced a rough few months. A death in the family unexpectedly changed finances, and Kiara fell behind on rent. When her landlord filed for eviction, Kiara was incredibly anxious. She needed a new place to live and was facing an eviction on her record. All the stress put her in the hospital for a week. All the while, Jada and Imani were going to school, Imani prepping for graduation as a senior. Fortunately, because of Jada’s involvement in the CHECK program because of her asthma, our advocates found out about the family’s legal problems and jumped in to address them. The Legal Council got the landlord to dismiss the eviction by working out a payment plan. In addition, once Kiara and the girls moved, legal advocates made sure that the girls still continued...

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Client Focus: Bria

For the first few years of Bria’s life, her grandmother took care of her. Bria’s mom was a drug addict, and Bria and her brothers were born with cocaine in their systems.

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Client Focus: Nicolas

When Nicolas came to the United States as a young boy, he was seeking political asylum, leaving a country that was dangerous for him to live in. He and his father got along fine in the United States. However, when Nicolas turned 19, he aged out of All Kids and was left uninsured. Even worse, shortly after his birthday, he was hospitalized. Luckily prior to his hospitalization, he connected with the Legal Council. We found he was eligible for Medicaid and could even expedite his application because of his asylee status. Sure enough, Nicolas was soon covered by Medicaid and didn’t have to worry about his costly hospital stay; he could simply focus on getting...

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Client Focus: Early Intervention

At age 2, Rashaan was not talking at the level of most children his age. Fortunately, his doctor noticed this delay, diagnosed autism, and ensured that he would receive Early Intervention (EI) speech therapy. EI ends at age 3, but federal law mandates that children in EI be evaluated to transition smoothly into special education services. However, Rashaan’s mother filed multiple requests for the evaluation but failed to get results. Because of the connection between our Chicago Medical-Legal Partnership for Children program and Rashaan’s medical providers, we were informed of this case and many more like it. Program director Amy Zimmerman filed a class complaint with the Illinois State Board of Education, eventually winning the battle and ensuring continuity of care for young children with delays and disabilities. As a direct result of the complaint, the Chicago Public School district...

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Client Focus: Janae and William

When Janae gave birth to William, things didn’t go exactly as planned. William was born premature and needed a hernia surgery, but for some reason, Janae could not get him a medical card to pay for the hospital bills. She was also having trouble getting other public benefits to supplement her income. Through the help of her community health worker, Janae and William were referred to the Legal Council. After many phone calls, meetings, and much research, our legal staff discovered that because Janae was adopted, the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services was causing a roadblock with Medicaid and other public benefits. We helped Janae fill out paperwork, and through our combined efforts, Janae  was able to get a medical card, food stamps, and additional income through Women, Infants, and Children (WIC). While Janae works hard at...

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