Cook County Health and Hospitals System Exceeds CountyCare Goal

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - BusinessCook County Health and Hospitals System (CCHHS) Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Ram Raju announced the health system has initiated 120, 000 applications for CountyCare, an early roll out of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This means CCHHS has exceeded its original goal of initiating 115,000 applications by December 31st more than two months ahead of schedule. Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle noted the County’s early implementation of the ACA will help transform the health system and improve the health of residents.

“CountyCare was a vision of what health care should look like in this country. Today, that vision is reality in Cook County,” Preckwinkle said. “The Affordable Care Act is doing its job here and providing health care to tens of thousands of Cook County residents.” CountyCare is an Illinois Medicaid program approved under the federal government’s 1115 Medicaid Waiver, which permits CCHHS to early-enroll individuals who will be eligible for Medicaid in 2014 through the Affordable Care Act.

“CountyCare’s success shows yet again the demand for and benefits of expanded access to healthcare here in Illinois. I have worked throughout my career to support Cook County’s health system and the people it serves, which is why I’m pleased that this is also just a taste of what’s to come in 2014, when the full benefits of the Affordable Care Act will be realized and 700,000 more Illinoisans will gain access to health insurance,” said U.S. Senator Richard Durbin.

To qualify, applicants must live in Cook County, be 19-64 years of age without dependents at home, have a Social Security number and be a legal immigrant for at least five years or a U.S. citizen. Yearly income must be below $15,282 for an individual or $20,628 per couple. Applicants must not be receiving or eligible for Medicaid, Medicare or CHIP. Learn more about CountyCare by calling 312.864.8200 or visit

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