As reported by Kaiser Health News and the Chicago Tribune, since 2010, Illinois health clinics have received more than $50 million in taxpayer-funded development grants to build new facilities, expand operations, and modernize equipment.
The money has sparked a government-subsidized building boom for health centers, and a bonanza for union contractors who, by law, are the only ones who can bid on contracts using the Federal cash.
It has also ushered in competition among health providers seeking to access and profit from to the government dollars.
Supporters say this competition will drive down costs for patients and expand their options. But as treating the poor becomes more profitable, bigger and better-funded and more politically-connected medical centers are expected to seek and win a larger share of the marketplace, which will drive out competition.
More from Kaiser Health News HERE