health care

Rauner Touts CNA Pilot Program in Peoria

Feb 16, 2018

Methodist College in Peoria is piloting a program in which low-income young adults can improve their medical training. A grant from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity enables four women to work as certified nursing assistants while simultaneously going to school.

Every year, community health centers across the U.S. serve 27 million people - at more than 10,000 sites - and they focus on reaching underserved communities.

Federal lawmakers allowed funding for these centers to lapse last fall. U.S. Senators Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth of Illinois issued a statement Tuesday calling on Senate leadership to immediately reauthorize funds, lest an estimated 9 million Americans lose access to health care.

Democrats in Springfield are pushing ahead with a plan hospitals say can’t come soon enough. It’s worth billions of dollars for treating some of the state’s most vulnerable people.

It’s called the Hospital Assessment Program, and it’s how the state pulls in billions of dollars in federal money to treat elderly, poor and disabled patients on the Medicaid program.

The two political parties have been negotiating in private for months, and now Democrats are pushing the debate out into the open.

Advocates for the poor in Illinois are pushing state lawmakers and the Rauner administration to act quickly on a program that funds hospital care.

Safety Net Hospitals provide care for thousands of people who rely on Medicaid. Through the state's assessment program, hospitals in Illinois are taxed – and then that money is used to access federal matching funds.

State Representative Natalie Phelps Finnie points to Hardin County Hospital in her deep southern Illinois district. She says a loss of funding for that facility would be devastating on multiple levels.

A Christian advocacy group has filed a federal complaint over an Illinois law requiring health care providers to discuss abortion with pregnant women.

Hundreds of thousands of low-income Illinois residents moved into managed care health plans on Jan. 1.

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CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois residents are being reminded that if they need health insurance coverage for next year they must register by Friday night.

Gov. Bruce Rauner's health care chief says a $63 billion Medicaid managed care program will save up to $300 million a year because of the competitive process providers had to undergo. 

A Cook County commissioner says a deal has been reached to repeal a Chicago-area tax on sweetened beverages. 

A clinic in central Illinois is working to provide better basic health care for people who suffer from mental illnesses.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Chicago is creating a new unit to prosecute health care fraud.

The Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board has approved plans for a 100-bed psychiatric hospital to address a substance abuse crisis in two of the state's counties.

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A University of Illinois at Chicago report examines "pervasive" racial inequalities in the city when it comes to housing, economics, criminal justice and health care.  The 184-page report looks at three groups which each make up roughly one-third of Chicago's population: blacks, whites and Latinos. 

U-S Representatives Darin LaHood and Rodney Davis are out touring their districts together in Central Illinois. With a capricious president leading the party, the congressmen are part of a Republican majority looking for a path forward. Illinois Public Radio's Tom Lisi caught up with them at an event in Springfield.

LaHood and Davis are joining forces to make Route 66 a Historic National Trail. One problem? President Trump’s budget would gut the National Park Service. Republicans seem to be pulling in all directions these days. Here’s LaHood speaking on healthcare:

Bill aims to protect abortion rights on the chance Roe v. Wade  is overturned.

With Democrats in firm control of the Illinois General Assembly, abortion rights might seem to be safe in the state. But what would happen if the U.S. Supreme Court overturned its landmark Roe v. Wade decision, which made abortion legal across the country in 1973?

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner's administration says it plans to lay off state prison nurses to streamline medical services and coordinate them with the current health care vendor.  Rauner's office informed the Illinois Nurses Association that in June it will lay off 124 nurses at 12 prisons. Their jobs would be privatized. 

Four Illinois community health centers are receiving a combined $4.9 million in federal grants to provide services in areas where there are barriers to affordable, quality health care.  U.S. Sens. Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth say the Department of Health and Human Services grants will go to centers in Cook, Lake and Peoria counties.

The Illinois Supreme Court considered a case Thursday that asks whether not-for-profit hospitals have to pay property taxes.

Officials say more than 68,000 Illinoisans have selected health plans using the Affordable Care Act's insurance marketplace, up nearly 1,400 compared to the same time last year.  The sign-ups are happening as President-elect Donald Trump and Republican leaders in Congress discuss repealing the law known as "Obamacare." It's unclear what might replace the law if they do repeal it.

It took just a few minutes for the Affordable Care Act to feature in Sunday’s presidential debate between Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump as Trump quickly blamed the legislation for the rising cost of health care.

“When I watch what’s happening with some horrible things like Obamacare where your health insurance and health care is going up by numbers that are astronomical,” Trump said, adding that costs have gone up as much as 71 percent.

The Trump campaign has not said where he obtained his figures. But even though premiums are rising, the effect is concentrated on plans sold on the individual market not those that are provided through an employer. 

OSF CEO To Retire in 2017

Sep 15, 2016

The Chief Executive Officer of OSF Healthcare System is retiring at the end of next year. Kevin Schoeplein started with the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis in 1978. He became CEO of OSF Healthcare System in 2011 and holds numerous state and national health care board positions.

 

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois' debt to the state's health care providers continues to grow in the wake of the failure by legislators and the governor to agree on a budget.

The Illinois Legislature's bipartisan Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability reported in July that payment delays to insurance companies and providers for state employee health care now stretch up to 1 1/2 years and will get worse.

U of I employees could face higher health costs

Jul 15, 2016

University of Illinois administrators are warning employees that the state could retroactively increase their health insurance premiums. The university system recently held informational meetings at its three campuses in Chicago, Champaign-Urbana and Springfield.

Katie Ross, who works in Human Resources for the U of I, says that the outcome of negotiations between Governor Bruce Rauner's administration and AFSCME-- Illinois' largest public employee union--could results in higher monthly premiums. If that happens, she says the state may take money from employees' paychecks  to cover increased premiums retroactively to July 1st of this year.  

A dozen health centers in Illinois have been awarded federal funding to broaden access to dental care.  Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell announced Thursday nearly $4.4 million in support for new dentists, dental hygienists, assistants, aides and technicians at 12 Illinois health centers.

Gov. Bruce Rauner has created a task force charged with finding fraud in taxpayer-funded health care programs.

The Republican Tuesday used his executive authority to form the group. It'll seek ways to prevent waste in state- and federally funded Medicaid , the state employee's health insurance and even costs of caring for inmates in Illinois prisons. Rauner says the cost of state-run health care programs increases when no one watches to stop abuse and fraud.

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Illinois lawmakers are considering whether midwives -- who aren't nurses -- should be legally permitted to oversee home births.

Democratic Representative Robyn Gabel of Evanston says it's a matter of safety. She's sponsor of a measure that would establish training and other standards.  

Gabel says close to one thousand Illinois women hire midwives to help deliver their babies now.  She wants the practice regulated.

A leading hospital system is courting military veterans with a multimillion-dollar ad campaign. This is raising concerns from some veterans groups that private sector marketing could weaken the Department of Veterans Affairs health care system.

Health officials say more than 500,000 Medicare patients in Illinois will have their health care needs coordinated by federally designated "accountable care organizations" this year.

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  A state appellate court has overturned the 2012 Illinois law setting terms for when charity care exempts a property from paying taxes.

More than two thirds of Illinois residents who bought health insurance under the affordable care act will get to keep tax credits that cut the cost of their plans. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that these subsidies could be given out in states that did not build their own online marketplaces, known as exchanges. Illinois is among those states.  

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