Windy City Media Group Frontpage News Home
CELEBRATING 28+ YEARS OF Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender NEWS

Search Gay News Articles
Advanced Search
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2014-04-16
Download Issue
  News Index       Archives   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds   AIDS @ 32
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime

Gay in the Life: Jeffrey Altergott Gay in the Life: Jeffrey Altergott
When Jeffrey Altergott was 2, his Grandma Alice gave him a little ...

Browse Gay News Index   Browse Gay News Archives
  Windy City Times

Legal council head talks Obamacare, LGBT community
by Stephen Sonneveld
2013-02-28

facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email

Fisher at Obamacare event. Photo by Stephen Sonneveld


Ann Hilton Fisher, executive director of the AIDS Legal Council of Chicago, examined "Obamacare Implementation in Illinois: What Lawyers Know So Far" at the Feb. 20 Chicago Bar Association LGBT Committee meeting, co-sponsored by the Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago (LAGBAC).

Fisher spoke for an hour about the changes being incrementally instituted as a result of the sweeping Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), colloquially known as the Affordable Care Act, the federal health-care law and Obamacare. The measure was signed into law March 23, 2010, and all phases are expected to be fully implemented by 2020.

Topics of the address included general interest items such as there being no health-insurance exchange legislation in Illinois, despite the fact that enrollment opens Oct. 1. Known as the "Health Insurance Marketplace," the exchanges "will allow individuals and small businesses to compare health plans, get answers to questions, find out if they are eligible for tax credits for private insurance or health programs ... and enroll in a health plan that meets their needs," according to HealthCare.gov .

Another portion of the Act will see the demise of the Medicare Part D "donut hole" by 2020, a 2006 provision that created a coverage gap in Medicare prescription payouts, forcing consumers to pay out-of-pocket when their drug costs reached the window of $2,700-$6,154, which greatly impacted the finances of the elderly and those with chronic conditions. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reported, "Experts estimate that more than a quarter of Part D enrollees hit the donut hole and often stop following their drug regimen as a result of the added cost burden."

Fisher mentioned Medicaid changes that are expected to affect "350,000 people in Illinois." For primary care providers, the Medicaid rate will be raised to Medicare rate.

Also, the Cook County Bureau of Health Services received a federal waiver to begin implementing Medicaid expansion a year early, resulting in County Care, a program enrolling now that will provide health care to U.S. citizens who make less than $15,282 a year. The restricted network of providers includes the Howard Brown Health Center, which was created by and has been serving Chicago's LGBT community since 1974.

A contentious point of the Act calls for the creation by 2015 of Health Information Exchanges (HIE), which mandates that if providers "want to get Medicare reimbursement [they] have to have electronic medical records," Fisher stated.

With the governor's task force at work to establish the system, Fisher noted, "What we are being told is the technology can't actually sequester mental health or HIV records from your general records," though it may be possible at a later date.

Fisher told Windy City Times that unlimited access to someone's complete medical history is a sensitive issue because HIV patients are still discriminated against by nursing homes and doctors. "One of the things we say about people with HIV is that people need to have trusting relationships with their health care providers, because it's not an easy medication regiment," she said. "They need to have the power to decide for themselves who they're going to trust with this information. And so, we really want to preserve that."

During her presentation, Fisher pointed out, "Your records will go into the HIE unless you opt out. [O]ne of the things the advocates are trying to do is make sure that people know they have that option to opt out."

"The elephant in the room for all of us who are involved with HIV issues is what's going to happen to the Ryan White Care Act (CARE)," Fisher told the attended. "[CARE] was fundamentally passed and funded to make sure that people with HIV had access to medical care. With health care reform, people with HIV, unless they're undocumented, should be able to have access to medical care."

Despite what Fisher called "wonderful, convincing evidence" from Massachusetts for keeping CARE as support services, "The people at HHS have said we don't think after the ACA we're going to need special programs for special diseases."

She added, "In the meantime, places like the AIDS Foundation are talking to all the managed care providers, saying we've got a lot of expertise in case management for this population, don't you want to hire us to do it? And the managed care entities are saying, eh, you're small fish, we really don't have time to think about you right now."

An employee from a law firm said of CARE, "We're trying to figure out what to tell people who call us and want to know what's going to be happening with my health care."

Fisher responded, "If you are currently getting your health care at a [CARE] provider like Howard Brown, you're going to be fine, because Howard Brown is going to be in Medicaid, is going to be in the managed care plans, you're going to be able to choose a managed care plan where your provider at Howard Brown is your primary care provider, and you're going to be fine.

"It's going to be much harder if you're getting your care at say, the Open Door Clinic out in Elgin, which is really just providing medical care to people with HIV, which is not, I think, a federally qualified health center, has not entered into any arrangement with managed care plans, has not become Medicaid certified."

CBA LGBT Committee meetings such as this one are open to the public, said chair and Cook County State's Attorney David Amen. Though the committee does not have a website, information about future speakers if often available from CBA and LAGBAC.

In attendance was Eli Judge—president of the DePaul University College of Law's LGBT student group, the Outlaws—who called the presentation "phenomenal. I think that this is information that anyone should be aware of."

Captions:

Speaker: Ann Hilton Fisher, Executive Director, AIDS Legal Council of Chicago

Fisher speaking with Eli Judge, President of DePaul Outlaws, LGBT student group at the DePaul U. College of Law

David Amen, Chair of the CBA LGBT Committee, and Cook County State's Attorney.


facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily
agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here.
Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you
stay on this page, the more you help us.

Lambda sues for denial of care to Illinois trans woman 2014-04-16
UIC delves into trans* healthcare policy with film 2014-04-15
LGBT health group holds bourbon tasting 2014-04-15
Fourth Circuit looks at rights of intersex child 2014-04-11
Conversion therapy bill falls in state House 2014-04-11
Community forum to include first person cured of HIV 2014-04-10
Women's health center moves to Uptown 2014-04-09
Area officials monitoring L.A. meningitis scare 2014-04-05
Community forum to checks up UIC trans* health policies 2014-04-03
HHS: Some same-sex couples now equal status for Medicare 2014-04-03
Photographic fundraiser to support Ride For AIDS Chicago 2014-04-02
'Extreme Weight Loss' looking for couples 2014-04-02
Quigley speaks on blood ban 2014-04-02
As Munar leaves, John Peller discusses taking over AFC 2014-04-02
The AIDS Generation: Stories of Survival and Resilience 2014-04-01
Center on Halsted marks LGBT Health Week with forum 2014-04-01
VIEWS How media criminalizes HIV and how to change it 2014-04-01
Factor 75 features healthful meal delivery 2014-04-01
Report highlights less documented LGB health risks 2014-03-30
Sebelius on LGBT Health Awareness Week 2014-03-26
Conversion therapy ban advances to House floor 2014-03-26
HIV-medication guide for med plans available 2014-03-26
Tissue is the issue 2014-03-26
Outgoing ALCC director reflects on life in public service 2014-03-26
Budget bite: Dental care, Medicaid and HIV 2014-03-26
President Obama names director, Office of Nat'l AIDS Policy 2014-03-24
AFC offers guide to HIV meds in Marketplace Plans 2014-03-20
Radio service for the disabled includes LGBT news 2014-03-19
AIDS Legal Council names new executive director 2014-03-18
Trans*Health @ UIC, A Community Forum April 9 2014-03-18
Registration opens for Iowa HIV is Not a Crime June 2-5 2014-03-17
TPAN has new interim CEO 2014-03-17
Strub reflects on past and present AIDS activism 2014-03-13
DIFFA holds winter ball at Center on Halsted 2014-03-12
Get Covered Illinois brings tour to Humboldt Park 2014-03-12
Sean Strub to make two Chicago appearances 2014-03-12
Arizona lawmaker comes out; mag gets HIV/AIDS patient lists 2014-03-12
Eating disorders more likely to affect LGBTs 2014-03-12
NMAC, women of color fight to end HIV/AIDS epidemic 2014-03-10
Iowa court hears Lambda Legal case on HIV-based conviction 2014-03-10





Copyright © 2014 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 



 

'This Is What It Feels Like' to be Armin van Buuren
 
Gay-owned B&B offers warmth in Rogers Park
 
BENT NIGHTS Sharon Corr; Dum Dum Girls; Landmarks
 
New Evanston independent bookstore to open in June
 
Prop 8 opponents set wedding date; trans teacher's return
 
Windy City Times Current DownloadNightspots Current DownloadQueercast Current Download
Windy City Media Group BlogsJoin Our Email List!Donate Now



  News Index       Archives   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds   AIDS @ 32
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime



About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video      News Videos      Nightspots Videos      Entertainment Videos      Queercast Videos      Comedy Videos     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.