The Affordable Care Act, which some call Obamacare, will soon be implemented in Illinois. The bill expanding Medicaid eligibility has passed both chambers and awaits the governor’s action. The federal government is to pay 100 percent of the cost for the new participants for the first three years. “I think this has been a cornerstone of President Obama’s administration and it’s a real delight to be able to help fully implement the Affordable Care Act in Illinois today,” Steans said.
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State Sen. Dale Righter (R-Mattoon) said the state cannot afford the Medicaid expansion. “Only in Springfield would we take a program that has been mismanaged and is unaffordable and say ‘You know what? Let's put a lot more people in it and let's add a lot more cost to it,' " Righter said.
The governor’s office said in a statement: "All people deserve access to decent health care. This bill will not only expand access to health care for the uninsured, it will also strengthen our efforts to transform Illinois’ health care sector into a wellness system that focuses on preventative services and provides better quality treatment when people do become sick. This bill will improve the health of the people of Illinois and create thousands of good jobs in the health care field. I look forward to signing this legislation and making the promise of the Affordable Care Act a reality in Illinois.”