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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 1, 2001

Gov. Ryan Signs Bill on Insurance Coverage

SPRINGFIELD -- Governor George H. Ryan today signed into law a bill to provide medical insurance coverage to people whose insurance providers were declared insolvent. The bill also provides for a waiver of the Comprehensive Health Insurance Plan's preexisting conditions exclusions.

Last year three group health insurance companies were declared to be insolvent and were subsequently liquidated.

"Many people, with health conditions, found they no longer had insurance coverage when the companies became insolvent. Under this new law they will now be able to acquire coverage under Illinois' CHIP," Governor Ryan said. "This legislation coupled with a CHIP supplemental appropriation now in the General Assembly should help strengthen the state's program."

Under the current law Illinois residents who have had coverage by a group health insurance policy for at least 18 months but who lost the coverage may apply to CHIP within 63 days. Generally, these individuals who apply for CHIP coverage are not required to satisfy a new preexisting condition exclusion or waiting period.

The bill (SB962) was sponsored in the Senate by Sens. Dave Syverson, R-Rockford and Todd Sieben, R-Geneseo. In the House it was sponsored by Reps. Frank J. Mautino, D-Spring Valley; Mary E. Flowers, D-Chicago; Ricca C. Slone, D-Peoria Heights; Harry Osterman, D-Chicago and Patricia Reid Lindner, R-Aurora.


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