Advocate Medical Group to close 7 Chicago-area clinics

Advocate Medical Group is closing its clinics in seven Chicago-area Walgreens stores on Feb. 15, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Advocate Medical Group, part of Advocate Aurora Health, plans to close in-store clinics at Walgreens stores in Carol Stream, Joliet, Naperville, Oak Park, River Forest, Sycamore and Yorkville. When the clinics close, Advocate will have 48 clinics in Walgreens stores in Illinois.

The medical group is shutting down the clinics due to overlap in services, according to a letter from Advocate to the Illinois Nurses Association obtained by the Chicago Tribune.

"The company found overlap in available healthcare services in the communities where Advocate Clinic at Walgreens are located, which has resulted in volumes that are unsustainable," Bonnie Kriescher, vice president of human resources for Advocate Medical Group, wrote in the letter. "Specifically, the company found that the communities' health care needs are well served by other providers."

The closures, which will affect 13 advanced practice nurses, prompted the Illinois Nurses Association to file a complaint against Advocate with the National Labor Relations Board. The complaint, filed Jan. 15, alleges Advocate failed to bargain in good faith with the union. The union wants Advocate to keep the clinics open until bargaining can take place, according to the report.

Advocate Aurora Health, which has dual headquarters in Milwaukee and Downers Grove, Ill., plans to more than double its revenue by 2025, according to the company's presentation this week at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco. To hit its goal, the health system wants to buy more hospitals and increase the number of patients served to about 10 million.

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