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AMITA Health and Aetna Better Health collaboration strengthens supportive housing program

The AMITA Health Housing and Health Alliance today announced a $100,000 award from Aetna Better Health of Illinois, a CVS Health Company, to help provide housing and supportive services to approximately 300 people impacted by homelessness, substance use disorders, HIV/AIDS and other chronic health conditions.

“We are incredibly grateful for Aetna’s generous support, which helps keep our doors open so that we can continue to serve and support our clients through these really hard times,” said AMITA Health Housing and Health Alliance Executive Director Korrey Kooistra. “Day to day, clients come to us who have been homeless or formerly homeless and struggling with addiction. The generosity of funders like Aetna makes an incredible difference in their lives.”

The Housing and Health Alliance depends on philanthropy to provide transitional living, permanent supportive housing, scattered-site housing and after-care programs to many of the most vulnerable people in the greater Chicagoland area. Many of its residents struggle with homelessness, HIV/AIDS, mental illness or substance use disorders. Community support of $1 million keeps the Housing and Health Alliance’s doors open.

“At Aetna, we understand the need for a holistic approach to help people achieve their best health,” said Kim Foltz, CEO of Aetna Better Health of Illinois. “Collaborating with organizations such as AMITA Health Housing and Health Alliance is one of the ways we connect community members with the support they need and are able to help provide care for the whole person.”

The Housing and Health Alliance offers a continuum of supportive housing that includes transitional housing, site-based permanent supportive housing and scattered site housing. Bonaventure House in the Lake View neighborhood of Chicago and the Harbor in Waukegan offer two-year transitional living programs that provide food, shelter, case management, substance use counseling and recovery services, occupational therapy, spiritual care and aftercare to support graduates in maintaining stable independent living. Both are licensed recovery homes.

Located in the resource-poor community of South Chicago, Bettendorf Place provides 23 units of permanent supportive housing. Every year, several tenants receive assistance to move to independent housing in the community. In recent years, the Housing and Health Alliance has expanded its number of scattered site apartments with case management to 125. These are in Chicago and Lake County, where the Housing and Health Alliance is leading efforts to address gaps in services to the LGBTQ community.

“We remain committed to providing all of the same supports we have always provided our clients, and we could not do it without the generous support of partners like Aetna,” said Kooistra. “Aetna’s support will provide the very vulnerable people we have the privilege of serving with the food, shelter and supportive services they need to maintain health, sobriety and stable housing, even during this unprecedented time.”

Aetna Better Health of Illinois offers quality, affordable health care to individuals through the State’s HealthChoice Illinois Medicaid program. The health plan employs over 900 associates, with most located in the state, and serves nearly 400,000 members in 102 counties.

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