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Illinois Comprehensive Health Insurance can mean a couple different things to different people. To some it means having the type of plan that covers all the bells and whistles without having to worry about having a large out of pocket expense, other than your monthly premiums of course. But it could also mean the Illinois comprehensive health insurance plan, or ICHIP, which is a government supported program that offers health insurance to individuals in Illinois who would normally not qualify for private insurance due to health conditions. Additionally, this program provides an alternative to being without healthcare. Right now, ICHIP covers things such as ambulance services, hospice stays, hospitalization and even preventative care like lab diagnostics. Currently, prescription drugs are not covered completely by the program. However, the plan does cover 80% of prescription charges, leaving you with a very agreeable 20% copayment. The maximum copayment that you are allowed to make on prescription drugs is $100 and, thankfully, this applies to the $2500 maximum that you are expected to pay for your prescriptions. There are three different plans to choose from based on your situation, but the deductible for all of them begins at $500 and goes all the way up to $5000. The three different plans are broken down into two different pools, the first being "Section 7 Pool" and the second being "Section 15 Pool". The Section 7 Pool contains two different plans that are available to eligible persons who qualify under the Section 7 Pool: the Medicare Plan which is plan 2 and the Traditional Plan which is plan 3. Under section 7 there is a 6 month wait on all preexisting conditions. The Medicare Plan #2 is the only plan that will accept you if you are already enrolled in Parts A and B of Medicare due to a disability or end-stage renal disease. This is typically for people under the age of 65 who qualify. Upon your 65 birthday you will want to switch over to a regular Medicare Supplement type plan of your choice. The Traditional Plan #3 is a Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) and would be the right plan for those having been rejected by a private health insurance company due to a preexisting condition. You can also be accepted for plan #3 if you have an individual policy that has become significantly more expensive than the premium you would be paying for under plan #3. The Section 15 Pool is a Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) and is typically for those individuals coming off a group health insurance plan and who have credible coverage. If your prior employer sponsored group plan had 20 or more employees you are required to exhaust COBRA benefits first before being eligible for this plan. The Illinois Comprehensive Health Insurance Plan (ICHIP) is perfect for people whose medical

issues are preventing them from receiving insurance coverage. It is a little more expensive than a private health insurance plan but it gives you a security blanket of coverage should your condition worsen. So it is imperative to get some good advice from an agent that specializes in health insurance and has a lot of different companies that they represent. Not every carrier will necessarily treat your condition the same and decline to offer you coverage. Take sleep apnea for example. Most every single carrier will decline to offer coverage if you have this condition, but there is a carrier in Illinois that would accept this condition with no problems. That is why it is very important to speak to someone who has plenty of experience in health insurance.

Randy Gillespie is the owner of Focus Insurance Group, specializing in Illinois Comprehensive Health Insurance. To learn more visit his site at

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Illinois Comprehensive Health Insurance - What is It.txt