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IL to Spend $1B on Medicaid for Undocumented Seniors


By: Adam Andrzejewski

Illinois is forecasting that its program to provide healthcare to undocumented immigrants will cost the state $1 billion in 2024 – far more than the $2 million that Illinoisans were promised it would cost at the program’s inception, according to Wirepoints.

In May 2020, Illinois became the first state to offer Medicaid for undocumented immigrants over the age of 65. Now-Congresswoman Delia Ramirez, then an Illinois state representative, sponsored the bill, and claimed the program would cost just $2 million per year. Unfortunately, this estimate was completely uninformed, with the program exceeding that in its first month.

At the time, she said the coverage will save the state money in the long run, and the cost of $2 million, “is nothing to a $2 billion Medicaid bill,” The State Journal-Register reported.

Since then, the program has grown to include people as young as 42, causing enrollment and costs to balloon. A closed door presentation to IL lawmakers (that has since been made public) reveals that the total cost of this program in 2024 is projected to be $990 million. Enrollments have far exceeded expectations — 51,914 compared to the estimated 33,500 in 2023, or 55% more.

“No portion of that cost is reimbursable by the federal government,” Wirepoints reported.

Illinois is being crushed by fleeing citizens and an ever-growing mountain of debt, which stands at more than $154 billion. This program would be an expensive investment for even the most fiscally sound states, but in Illinois, it’s unaffordable and pushes the state closer to the brink of economic ruin.

Related Story: Biden to Open up Medicaid, Obamacare to About 700,000 Illegal Immigrants

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