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Filing for Bankruptcy Is the Latest in a String of Financial Losses for Clinic

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Chicago, ILFor the East Chicago Community Health Center, filing for bankruptcy may have seemed inevitable. The institution just endured its fifth consecutive year of financial loss, prompting the removal of its founder and CEO, Cornell Brantley, and the resignation of its CFO, Ricardo Perez.

In chapter 11 filings entered last month, the clinic declared total assets of roughly $5.1 million and liabilities of about $2.3 million, a downfall that required the tax-exempt organization to notify the state.

Judges have allowed the organization to maintain its operations under bankruptcy protection rules. The clinic's largest collector, a local bank to which the clinic owes more than $1 million, has agreed to a reduced mortgage payment schedule.

The clinic provides safety net health services to more than 12,000 patients in the Chicago area, regardless of their income, insurance or ability to pay.

Luis Molina, a former board member of the clinic and a finance officer with a local healthcare provider, blames the financial troubles on business decisions made without committee approval.

"They were presented as done deals and management then would try to present the best financial projections to accomplish them," he told the Post-Tribune. "The center went from breaking even to the brink of bankruptcy."


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