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New health plan for the uninsured launches in IL

Chicago Tribune, August 20, 2010

A new health insurance option for people with pre-existing conditions and without medical coverage launches in Illinois on Friday, but only a fraction of the uninsured will benefit. Enrollment in the Illinois Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan will proceed on a first-come, first-served basis. It's one of the first major programs to be rolled out in Illinois under recently enacted national health legislation. Funding comes from premiums and from the federal government, which is giving the state $196 million to run the plan until 2014, when a much more extensive program for people without insurance will begin. IPXP benefits kick in Sept. 1 for those lucky enough to be accepted by the plan. The state estimates that only 4,000 to 6,000 people will qualify because of funding restrictions. That's a small slice of 1.7 million people without health insurance in Illinois.