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Health care
Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
3:54pm
Thu Oct 3, 2013

Statewide Campaign Meant To Help Illinois Students Obtain Health Insurance Launches

In an effort to encourage more young people to obtain health insurance as part of the Affordable Care Act, the Illinois PIRG Education Fund kicked off a statewide campaign Thursday meant to inform students about the law as well as provide tips on finding the right coverage. 

The Illinois PIRG Education Fund, which conducts research and public education on behalf of consumers, also unveiled a new "Illinois Health Insurance 101" guide to help young people navigate the state's online health insurance marketplace, called Get Covered Illinois, which opened Tuesday along with other exchanges nationwide. The statewide insurance marketplaces are a key component of President Barack Obama's signature health care reform law.

"Many are saying that young people don't care. That we don't want access to health insurance. That we don't understand it," said Kathy Waligora with the community health non-profit Ever Thrive Illinois, which helped launch the educational campaign at an event at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). "The truth is we get it...[We] do want health insurance. We actually do understand the importance of being insured."

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PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
11:18am
Wed Oct 2, 2013

Health Care Advocates Celebrate The Launch Of Illinois' Health Insurance Marketplace

Tuesday was a big day for Illinoisans, and Americans across the country, without health coverage who were able to start comparison shopping on the new statewide health insurance exchanges, one of the key aspects of the Affordable Care Act.

Quick Hit
by Aricka Flowers
5:05pm
Tue Oct 1, 2013

After Senate Rejects Conference, House Looks To Fund Government In Piecemeal Fashion

As promised, the Senate voted to reject the House's request for conference. Now, the GOP-led House is looking to fund the government in a piecemeal fashion.

The Senate voted Tuesday along party lines in a 54-46 vote to reject the House's request for conference, which Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said would happen last night after the government shutdown.

As a result, the House is reportedly looking to reopen the government in a piecemeal manner by passing small continuing resolutions (C.R.) to address some of the now-shuttered programs and agencies. The House is looking to pass C.R.s that would fund the Department of Veteran's Affairs, the National Parks Service and operations for the District of Columbia.

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PI Original
by Aricka Flowers
1:34am
Tue Oct 1, 2013

U.S. Government Shutdown: How Did We Get Here And What's Next?

The U.S. government has shut down. Now what? Progress Illinois takes a look at how we got here and what could happen over the next several hours and days as leaders in the House and Senate refuse to give in to the other's demands.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
9:35am
Fri Sep 27, 2013

Chicagoans With Mental Illness Push Back Against Stigma At Town Hall Meeting

Stigma and misconceptions about people with mental illness can create major barriers when it comes to them accessing housing, employment and other services and supports, according to panelists at a Chicago town hall meeting on the topic Thursday. 

Janice Parker, a panelist and assistant director of consumer affairs at the Illinois Institute of Technology's Center on Adherence and Self Determination, said she's suffered from severe depression, anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder due to a previous abusive marriage. She says she has faced discrimination numerous times just due to her illness. For example, when she tried to receive a government-provided medical card when her condition made it too difficult for her to work, she was told, ”Well, you don’t look sick to me.”

But Parker, who is African American, said what's really bothersome is that she's felt stigmatized the most within her own community.

"In our community, women aren't supposed to be tired," Parker said at the discussion, hosted by Access Living. "We're not supposed to be overburdened. [They say], 'Buck up ... Stop being a wimp."

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