People who are in the United States without proper documentation often lack the resources to receive the healthcare they need. For many undocumented immigrants who are low-income, qualifying for government health insurance is a nearly untraversable obstacle.
That officially changes in Illinois, however, with the introduction of a new program that offers free healthcare to low-income undocumented seniors.
Illinois launches healthcare for senior immigrants
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, a new program is already in effect to provide healthcare to those who may need it most. Undocumented immigrants who are 55 and older may qualify if they meet income eligibility limits. This program is also available to legal residents who meet the eligibility requirements but have not had their green card long enough to qualify for other healthcare programs.
The new program covers services that many people need but previously did not have access to such as doctor visits, hospital stays, vision care, dental care and prescription drugs.
Potential expansion in the future
Although this new program will help many people in the state, it still leaves many undocumented immigrants unprotected. While the Healthy Illinois group pushed for the new healthcare legislation to include all low-income undocumented immigrants, legislation narrowed the program to only include seniors. Even so, it may be likely that Illinois will see the expansion of this program to include undocumented adults in the future.
Immigrants who are in the United States to work may be able to solidify their residence and become a legal citizen. Often, programs and benefits are available to legal immigrants that help provide tools to achieve success in America.