Senator Hunter speaks into a microphone while on the Senate floor.CHIGAGO — State Senator Mattie Hunter is encouraging organizations that work in the realm of prevention, care and treatment of sickle cell disease to apply for funding to increase services for people with the illness.

“Closing the gap in access to comprehensive care and preventative treatment that some communities experience is a step toward curbing the deep social impact and mortality rate of sickle cell disease,” said Hunter (D-Chicago). “This funding offers hope for improved outcomes and a better quality of life for those affected by this disease.”

The Illinois Department of Public Health will provide funding for eight organizations to grow innovative solutions to sickle cell disease. Organizations will be awarded grant funding with the goal of increasing access to comprehensive sickle cell treatment, pain management therapies, infusion centers, mental health resources and counseling opportunities for people with sickle cell disease and sickle cell trait.

Applications will be accepted until March 18 at 5 p.m. For more information and to apply, visit and search for this program under “Current Grants” and “Health Promotion.”