You’ve probably heard about the Affordable Care Act.
If you live in Illinois, you probably don’t have to wait much longer for coverage to become available.
But for many others, the coverage isn’t available until next year.
And those without coverage aren’t exactly guaranteed to have it.
A new report from the state’s Department of Insurance and Consumer Protection shows that Illinoisans without health insurance, or those with a pre-existing condition, are already struggling with a costly healthcare cost, according to a story by The Chicago Tribune.
The report found that more than 2.4 million Illinoisans with pre-injury or chronic health conditions will likely be without coverage this year due to the new Affordable Care Care Act, or ACA.
That’s more than double the number who will be without insurance in 2020.
The new law was created to help Americans stay healthy, and the data suggests that the problem of people without coverage is just beginning.
Illinois has the second-highest number of uninsured residents in the nation, with more than 3.7 million people without health coverage.
In 2020, the state will have 2.8 million people with pre and chronic health problems.
A similar number of people in the state with pre-, chronic-, and cancer-related conditions will be uninsured.
“The number of Illinoisans who don’t need health insurance and can’t afford it is rising,” said Daniel J. Zukin, the director of the state health insurance department.
“We need to keep working to make sure we’re getting the resources that we need to cover those individuals who are in need.”
The number of state residents without health care insurance has grown from 6.7 percent of the population in 2015 to 14.7% in 2020, according the data.
In the first three months of 2019, the number of those without health benefits in Illinois jumped from 4.6 million to 6.4.
That number climbed to 9.1 million in 2020 and reached 13.2 million by the end of 2021, according a study from the Illinois Association of Health Plans.
“Illinois has one of the highest uninsured rates in the country, and we have to be vigilant in getting to those folks,” said Tom Murphy, executive director of Healthy Illinois, a statewide health insurance advocacy group.
“They’re the people who are the least able to afford the cost of healthcare.”
For most Illinoisans, the costs of covering themselves and their family is the main reason they don’t own a health insurance plan.
The costs of coverage can be high for those without a plan, Murphy said.
“It’s a significant chunk of your income.
For those that can’t get a health plan, it’s a serious financial burden,” Murphy said, adding that many of those with pre or chronic illnesses are unable to find a job or have other financial struggles.
Many states with universal healthcare coverage already have the highest costs for insurance in the US, but Illinois is among the states where people with no insurance are the most likely to not be covered.
In Illinois, about 15.9 million Illinois residents with preinjury-related health conditions have no insurance.
In 2016, the report found about 17.6 percent of those had no insurance, with those without insurance making up the majority of those who didn’t have health insurance.
The average cost of a private plan in the U.S. was $3,764 per month in 2020 according to Kaiser Family Foundation.
In 2018, that cost was $4,848 per month.
According to the report, those without private coverage made up about 13 percent of Illinois residents without a health policy, with nearly 12 percent of them not having health insurance at all.
Many residents with no coverage are paying for out-of-pocket costs as a result of the ACA.
“If you’re not covered you’re going to be on the hook for a lot of that,” Murphy told the Tribune.
“You’re going for copays and deductibles.
You’re going through out- of-pocket expenses and deductions.”
The costs can be a major factor in making up for the gap between what people make and what they can afford.
In one study, researchers looked at the costs and benefits of an out-door insurance policy in Illinois.
The researchers compared the costs to the costs in Illinois for a private insurance plan and found that a single policy cost about $2,000 per year in 2020 to cover the insured.
That compared to $2.95 per month for a state-run plan.
“People without insurance can’t spend as much on healthcare as people with insurance because it’s so expensive,” Murphy explained.
“There’s so much more you can spend on other things, and you don’t even have to pay for it out of pocket.
It’s just like a tax on your lifestyle.”
The cost of the policy is the biggest factor determining whether you get coverage or not, according Zuk in the Tribune report. He said