SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Governor JB Pritzker and state health care leaders called attention to a major change for Medicaid recipients Monday.
Starting this week, Illinoisans will have to renew their Medicaid coverage. Congress paused renewals for the healthcare coverage during the pandemic, but those rules have now changed.
In illinois, the renewals will happen on a rolling basis through the middle of next year. The process begins this week with those who have renewal dates in June set to receive letters in the mail requiring them to renew their coverage.
“Every Medicaid recipient should keep a close eye on their mailboxes to see if they were automatically renewed or if they need to fill out and return a renewal form,” Pritzker said. “We are committed to making this process as smooth and efficient as possible.”
According to state health leaders who spoke alongside Pritzker Monday, it’s a roll out that has been years in the making.
“For three years these letters haven’t been going out, so there’s a large group of people who’ve never experienced this and don’t even know that they’re supposed to be looking out for redetermination paperwork, that they have to send it in,” said Samantha Olds Frey, the CEO of the Illinois Association of Medicaid Health Plans.
Olds says it’s likely hundreds of thousands of people in the state will lose Medicaid coverage because they no longer qualify, but she wants to make sure no one loses coverage because they don’t fill out the paperwork.
“There’s an estimate from 350,000 to 700,000 people and some estimates are even higher than that,” she said.
According to the governor’s office, those who don’t fill out a form or are no longer eligible will lose Medicaid coverage one month after their listed due date.
“That does not mean you will be left uninsured,” Pritzker said. “Anyone who is no longer eligible for Medicaid coverage will be notified and receive information about how to enroll in alternative and affordable coverage.”
The most pressing need for Medicaid they say is for enrollees to have up-to-date contact information. You can make sure yours is up-to-date by visiting abe.illinois.gov and click ‘manage my case.’