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Illinois health care programs for uninsured and free health insurance plans.

Government as well as non-profit agencies in Illinois can provide free or low cost medical care to the uninsured or patients who lack full health care coverage. There are also a number of free health insurance policies available, both from the government and charities. Most of the resources also require that applicants meet certain low income guidelines, and find how to apply below.

Numerous services are available in the state. Some focus on providing more basic care, such as checkups, screening, immunizations, or medications. Additional medical services can deal with more unique or specialized medical needs, which can include cancer screenings (or treatments) or providing insurance coverage for complicated pre-existing conditions. Children and women are also given priority in most cases. The state of Illinois will work with the federal government, hospitals and local non-profits in order to fund and administer these programs for residents.

In some cases, the patient will be required to pay a minimal fee for their services or they may need to contribute for follow up tests or any needed medications. However each and every program will do what they can to provide free medical serves or to make it as affordable as possible for low to moderate income patients.

Resources for uninsured in Illinois

Access to Care is the name of a program that provides affordable health care services for uninsured and low-income residents of northwest Chicago and suburban Cook County only. Clients need to meet established income levels and they can’t be signed up for Medicaid, Medicare, All Kids or FamilyCare. Some of what can be paid for and provided includes basic lab and x-ray services for $5, prescription medications, and access to a doctor for a small fee. Call 708-531-0680, or find free community clinics for Illinois as well as Chicago

All Kids is an Illinois resource that can coordinate comprehensive health care and insurance to uninsured children from low income families. It can cover infants or children and teenagers who are age 19 or younger. Receive medical bill assistance for hospital stays, prescription drugs, doctor visits, vision care, dental care, eyeglasses, regular check-ups, immunizations, speech and physical therapy. Telephone number is 866-255-5437.




The DuPage County Health Care resource is financial assistance for paying medical bills, eyeglasses, dental fees, fees, and prescriptions. It is only offered for families who live in the county. A number of restrictions are in place. 800-942-9412

FamilyCare is offered for children as well as the entire family or relatives who may be caring for them. The household needs to have a child under 18, and it can also provide medical services to their caregiver. 866-255-5437

The state offers Healthcare for Illinois Veterans. This is a low cost government health insurance plan. Veterans, as well as their families, can receive low cost insurance with affordable premiums. It is for residents who do not get medical help from Veterans Health Administration benefits .In some lases low income veterans who are also uninsured can get free care. Call 877-483-8779.

Illinois AIDS Drug Assistance Program is administered by the Illinois Department of Public Health and is funded by the federal government. Patients who are diagnosed with AIDs or HIV may qualify for free medications and treatments. 800-243-2437

IBCCP is the Breast and Cervical Cancer Program. It will provide free screening for eligible uninsured or underserved women. Included are pap tests, Mammograms, breast and pelvic exams. Call 888-522-1282.





Illinois Comprehensive Health Insurance, which is also called ICHIP, can provide health insurance on an individual basis. Assistance is offered for those who have been denied coverage due to high risk and/or pre-existing conditions. In total over 30 different diseases or conditions are classified as high risk. It can even in effect replace someone’s existing health insurance plan if their premiums are higher than this Illinois program. While terms can change, the premiums set by the state can be at 125%-150% of the average rate charged by the largest private health insurance companies.

A very similar option is the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan. This is another form of health insurance for those denied coverage due to pre-existing medical conditions. The state can help patients access a broad range of health benefits and medical bill assistance. This can include, but is not limited to, primary, hospital and specialty care as well as prescription drugs. There are premiums, deductibles and out of pocket expenses due, but all pre-existing conditions are covered. Call toll free 877-210-9167.

Affordable or maybe even free, stroke and heart disease screening is available for low income women from WISEWOMAN. The government created this in an effort to delay, prevent or control cardiovascular and chronic diseases. You will need to call in order to find a screening site in your Illinois town, city, or county. In addition to basic checks, it will provide health care checks for stroke and heart disease screening. Also receive free education, tips, and advice on how to live a heart-healthy diet/lifestyle. 888-522-1282

Illinois Healthy Women is a voluntary resource that women can sign up for. It coordinates family planning, birth control services, and other assistance to the disadvantaged. Illinois women can also get assistance appealing health insurance disputes. A number of needs can be addressed, including physical exams, family planning, counseling about women's health, pap tests, mammogram, and lab tests. If requested, it can also offer women testing for sexually transmitted infections. Call 800-226-0768.

Illinois Telecommunications Access Corporation is a resource for those residents who are hearing impaired, deaf, speech-disabled, or even deaf-blind. There may also be free cell phones or technology given out as part of this health care plan. Vouchers and loans are distributed to help uninsured people pay for, or finance, equipment such as TTY with LVD or Amplified and Braille Telephones. Phone 800-841-6167, or locate free government phones for the disabled.

Illinois Assistive Technology Program (IATP) covers equipment that the disabled and/or elderly need. It can pay for hearing aid, vision equipment, grab bars for a shower, ramps, wheelchairs, and so much more. Seniors and the disabled, whose health insurance does not pay for the equipment they need, can try this program. There are even free hearing aids for low income households. Call 800-852-5110. Or find other resources, such as

Vaccines and Medications for Children Program will coordinate free/low cost vaccines for children. Local clinics in Illinois administer the shots. It can help address influenza, tetanus, Meningocaccal, measles, and more. Minimal fees may be charged to patients. 800-526-4372






Medical Assistance Program, which is Medicaid in Illinois, is a free government health insurance plan for the poor, disabled, and less fortunate. It provides medical care for households that are uninsured and that meet income levels. The insurance plan can provide prescription drugs, exams, homecare for seniors, and other support. Dial 217-782-2570.

Medicaid Presumptive Eligibility (MPE) is temporary and immediate coverage for outpatient health services. It is offered to uninsured pregnant women. Patients can receive temporary care. Applicants will also need to apply for the Moms and Babies program for ongoing and more comprehensive care. MPE will pay for prenatal checkups, doctor visits, lab tests, vitamins, medicine, specialty medical care, emergency rooms, and mental health/substance abuse services. While not as common, funding may also cover transportation expenses that are incurred getting to medical care and other services.

Moms and Babies is a non-profit program that will pay for healthcare services for low-income and under insured pregnant women and their babies. Both in and outpatient bills are paid while the women is pregnant and up to 60 days after the baby is born. 866-255-5437.


By Jon McNamara

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