Healthcare for Undocumented Individuals in Illinois
Finding and qualifying for healthcare for undocumented individuals in Illinois can be challenging. Following is an overview of some healthcare programs and services available to Illinois residents, including in many cases undocumented individuals.
Medicaid is a federal program managed by each state for its residents. Illinois offers Medicaid health coverage to residents with limited income through its partnership with the federal government. The Illinois Department of Healthcare & Family Services manages Medicaid, providing care to low-income Illinoisans.
- Federal law grants U.S. citizens, immigrants recognized as “qualified” under specific statutes, and individuals under certain parole categories the same comprehensive coverage as refugees through both ACA Adult and AABD Medicaid programs.
- While U.S. citizens and most qualified immigrants receive immediate access to federal Medicaid, certain groups like Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) and Venezuelan parolees face a 5-year waiting period, known as the “five-year bar,” before being eligible.
- The 5-Year Bar applies to some, but not all, immigrant groups and is a waiting period, not a permanent barrier.
ABE (Application for Benefits Eligibility)
ABE is an online site that lets you apply for and manage your health coverage (HBIA, HBIS, Moms & Babies, All Kids), SNAP & cash benefits, and even Medicare Savings Program enrollment. Plus, it’s SSN-free for most programs, making access even easier:
- Social Security Numbers are not required for enrollment
- Illinois does not collect the sponsor information on the application for medical coverage (such as HBIA, HBIS, Moms & Babies, All Kids)
Comprehensive Reproductive Health Coverage Program
HFS Family Planning Program (FPP), which includes Family Planning Presumptive Eligibility (FPPE), provides limited medical coverage for preventive reproductive health services for eligible Illinois residents, regardless of age or gender:
- Illinois FPP benefits are open to everyone who meets the eligibility criteria, including U.S. citizens, immigrants with qualified legal status, and individuals granted humanitarian immigration status.
- FPP serves as a backup for those who don’t qualify for full Medicaid.
- FPP offers targeted coverage for individuals with:
- Limited private insurance coverage for reproductive health services.
- Confidentiality concerns about using their private insurance for these services.
- FPPE provides fast, temporary coverage for family planning and related services with trained providers. No citizenship documents are needed – everyone with a qualifying need is welcome.
For more information, resources and programs visit the Get Care Illinois Website https://getcareillinois.org/. Information is available in English, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese and Polish.