* This possibility was mentioned during the Senate floor debate over the Medicaid cuts. It’s very possible that people will, indeed, die because of the cuts…
Rev. Jesse Jackson urged Illinois Governor Pat Quinn Tuesday to not sign a bill that would cut Medicaid expenses.
The senate bill is expected to reduce Medicaid costs by $1.6 billion in fiscal year 2013. It would cut services designed to help the poor and disabled, including a shutdown to Illinois Cares Rx, a senior prescription drug assistance program. The program currently services 180,000 people.
Jackson said people could die because of the cuts.
“Medicaid is life or death and we choose life,” Jackson said. “The Governor must not sign this bill until we find an alternative.”
* But there is still a safety net…
Illinois hospitals would be required to provide free care to some poor people under a bill passed by the Legislature and headed to the governor’s desk.
Urban hospitals would have to provide free treatment to patients with incomes below 200 percent of the federal poverty guidelines. That’s about $46,000 for a family of four.
Rural hospitals would have to give free care to patients with incomes below 125 percent of the poverty guidelines. That’s about $29,000 for a family of four.
Care would have to be medically necessary and patients would have to apply for assistance.
The hospitals supported the free care proposal, but as subscribers were told over a week ago, the Senate Republicans were against it.
* Tamms, Dwight prisons stay open in House plan