Launch of Second Ronald McDonald Care Mobile Expands Health Services to Children in Need


Oak Lawn, Illinois – Advocate Children’s Hospital and Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana are expanding their reach with the launch of a second Ronald McDonald Care Mobile, which will provide primary health care to children in underserved communities.

On Friday, December 15 at 9:00 a.m., leaders from Ronald McDonald House Charities and Advocate Children’s Hospital will unveil the new Ronald McDonald Care Mobile at Frank W. Reilly Elementary School, 3650 W. School Street, in the Avondale neighborhood of Chicago. Leaders from both organizations will speak briefly at the ceremony before students from Reilly Elementary School begin receiving services.

The launch will mark the start of services in the new fully equipped medical clinic, and Reilly Elementary students will be the first children to receive care in the mobile, which will be operated by Advocate Children’s Hospital clinical teams led by Dr. Joanna Lewis, an Advocate Children’s pediatrician and medical director of the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile.

The new Ronald McDonald Care Mobile will expand coverage in northern Cook, Lake, McHenry and Kane Counties where the number of at-risk children continues to grow.

“We partner with schools in neighborhoods where at-risk children may not have access to primary and preventative care services, such as immunizations, school physicals, and vision screenings, to name a few,” says Dr. Lewis. “Our goal is to serve them immediately, but also connect families to a medical home to provide continuity of care. That’s how we can really make a difference in children’s lives and their communities.”

The partnership between the two organizations began in 2008 when the first Ronald McDonald Care Mobile debuted in the city. It has traveled primarily in the southern region of Chicago, and during that time, it has served more than 17,000 children who typically do not have access to health care.

“Ronald McDonald House Charities is pleased to partner with Advocate Children’s Hospital to expand children’s health care through the launch of our second Ronald McDonald Care Mobile,” said Holly Buckendahl, chief executive officer of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana. “We are both committed to serving children and their families in their greatest time of need. The expansion of the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile program addresses those needs through creating greater access to under-served children in neighborhoods throughout the Greater Chicago area.”

With two Ronald McDonald Care Mobiles in operation, it is estimated that in 2018 alone, they will serve more than 100 schools and 6,000 children.


About Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana (RMHC-CNI)
RMHC-CNI is an independent not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to care for families of children with complex medical needs while their child is being treated in the hospital. Each night, we keep 153 families close to the care and resources they need because of the comfort, compassion and community at five area Ronald McDonald Houses® and three Ronald McDonald Family Rooms®. Allowing families to stay close to their child in the hospital supports the health and wellbeing of the child, and saves our families more than $10 million in hotel and food costs each year. We are located near Advocate Children’s HospitalLoyola University Medical CenterUChicago Medicine Comer Children’s HospitalAnn & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Edward Hospital in Napervilleand Northwestern Medicine Central DuPage Hospital. RMHC-CNI also operates the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile® program which provides medical care to children in underserved areas. RMHC-CNI is an approved BBB Accredited Business. For more information visit ronaldhousechicago.org.

About Advocate Children’s Hospital

As part of Advocate Health Care, Advocate Children’s Hospital is the largest network provider of pediatric services in Illinois and among the top 10 in the nation. The two main campuses are located in the Chicago metropolitan region – Oak Lawn in the southwest and Park Ridge in the northwest, with additional services accessible at other Advocate hospitals throughout the state.  Advocate Children’s Hospital serves as a major referral center for infants and children.  Through a special, wholistic approach, Advocate Children’s Hospital combines some of the country’s most respected medical talent with exceptional and compassionate care.  In fact, the children’s hospital has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report as one of the nation’s leaders in pediatric cardiology and neonatology, and numerous physicians have been cited as being among the “Top Doctors” regionally and nationally in their respective fields.  Advocate Children’s Hospital is staffed by more than 400 pediatricians and 230 pediatric subspecialists who offer a wide range of services for children.