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Friday, November 30, 2012

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Health Care Reform Charges Ahead

One of the big winners in the November general election was the Affordable Care Act (ACA). While other states held off planning until after the election, Illinois took three huge steps toward implementing the ACA this month.

On November 19, 2012, Cook County opened enrollment into “County Care,” the Medicaid expansion program for eligible county residents. The waiver will pilot the ACA’s Medicaid expansion in 2013 – a full year before the rest of the state.

Not to be out-done, Illinois legislators filed a bill (HB 6253) earlier this week to expand Medicaid to all low income Illinoisans. To learn more, check out these fact sheets – one by Health & Disability Advocates and one by the Dept. of Health & Family Services

Finally, the Illinois Department of Insurance submitted the state’s application to run a Partnership Health Insurance Exchange on November 16, 2012, meaning that the state will share the task of administering a health insurance exchange with the federal government. The state will need to decide soon how it will roll out its Navigator and in person consumer assistance programs.

Stay tuned for updates as these reforms progress!

November blog entries

Illinois bringing health to (medical care) homes:
Update: Illinois’ Care Coordination and Managed Care System

ACA is here to stay—what does that mean for you?
After the Election: A Consumer’s guide to the Health Law

A geographic status update on health care reform:
The Outlook for “Obamacare” in Two Maps

CountyCare: a step in the right direction for Illinois:
The CCHHS 1115 Medicaid Waiver: What is CountyCare?

We aren’t the only ones in favor of health care reform, doctors like it, too!
Why Physician Groups support the ACA

November Resources

Read about two HDA clients who will be helped by the Medicaid Expansion Legislation in Illinois
HB 2653 Fact Sheet by Health & Disability Advocates

Who will help Americans find their way in the new healthcare system? Navigators:
Navigator & In-Person Assistance Programs

A look at Illinois’ move to new medical care models:
IL Health Reform 2012: Care Coordination, Managed Care and Long-Term Services and Supports

CountyCare: Illinois’ new Medicaid Program, in three languages:
English: Medicaid program for uninsured adults in Cook County
Polish: Program Medicaid dla nieubezpieczonych doroslych w Cook County
Spanish: Programa de Medicaid para los adultos sin seguro médico en el Condado de Cook

Update from the Governor’s Office about ACA Implementation Efforts
Illinois ACA Implementation: Preparing for 2014

Upcoming Health Care Reform Events

December 4: Exchange Rollout: Developing Partnerships between Consumer Health and LGBT Advocacy Groups
December 12: The Health Care Law 101 Webinar
December 13: Engineering an Exchange: A Look at State Blueprints and Decisions
December 14: Learn more about the Affordable Care Act with the Young Invincibles
December 18: Starting Strong for Community Health Webinar: The ACA and Older Adults

Help power IHM! Consider us in your annual giving.

For the latest on how the new health care law is impacting Illinois, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube. You can also email us at or submit your question here about how healthcare reform affects you.


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