Although I feel that this news will not be shocking to many of us, a study from the St. Louis-based Contraceptive Choice Project (CCP) released earlier this month demonstrated that providing free birth control to women 14-45 reduced unintended pregnancy and abortion rates. In fact, the study found that, when price is not a barrier, more people choose longer-term options, like IUDs and implants, which are most effective for preventing pregnancy.
This study is especially timely as it provides support for provisions of the Affordable Care Act which seek to improve the health of women by mandating that new private insurance plans cover certain services, including the full range of FDA-approved contraceptives, STI screening and counseling, and well-women visits.
Teen pregnancy is an obvious problem in our country, but high rates of sexually transmitted infections are a much less visible enemy. In Illinois from January to December 2011, there were 20,000 cases of Chlamydia among adolescents 10 to 19 years of age, accounting for almost 40% of the total cases last year. This same cohort also comprised 35.8% of all cases of Gonorrhea in 2011.
We know that some youth are choosing to become sexually active, and we should make sure that they are as safe as possible. That is why IMCHC continues to support policies that promote comprehensive sexual education and health decision making among teens across the state.
IMCHC is excited to participate as an allied organization at ACLU:ENGAGE, an all-day gathering of hundreds of human rights and civil liberties activists, being held Saturday, December 1st in downtown Chicago by the ACLU of Illinois.
This conference will bring together lawyers, lawmakers, activists, artists, and students in downtown Chicago to launch a civil liberties agenda for the next administration. As an allied organization, our supporters will receive the same registration rate as current ACLU members ($25 “early bird” and $35 after Oct 31) - just use the ticket code “IMCHC” when you sign up.
The keynote speaker is the hysterical Aasif Mandvi, “Senior Middle East Correspondent” for the Daily Show. ACLU:ENGAGE will also feature discussions with current legislators and exceptional activists who know how to make change online, in the halls of Congress, in the courts, and on the streets of Chicago.
Chicago Area Immunization Campaign Flu Outreach
On average, more than 200,000 people are hospitalized each year because of complications from the flu. The single best way to protect against seasonal flu and its potential severe complications is for everyone 6 months and older to get an influenza vaccine each year. That is why CAIC works hard to conduct flu outreach each year, including promotion of the Chicago Department of Public Health flu clinics.
CDPH flu clinics are located throughout the city to provide free vaccines on weekends and weekdays. Call 311 to find a clinic near you or see the full list here.
You can find more information about CAIC's flu outreach and other immunization related topics in their latest eUpshot newsletter.
FQHCs and SHCs
Divya Mohan Little is scheduled to present on the Illinois Primary Health Care Association's 30th Annual Leadership Conference on October 18 in Lake Geneva, WI. She will join two FQHC managers to facilitate a session entitled FQHCs and School Health Centers: A Partnership Taking Center Stage. Registration is still open, you can download the form here.
Quinn Names Agencies to Lead Transition to Coordinated Care
Governor Pat Quinn and the Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) named six healthcare networks yesterday that have been chosen to launch the state’s transition to greatly expanded coordinated care by 2015. The six provider groups applied to be part of the “Care Coordination Innovations Project”. They were selected based on their demonstrated ability to offer a holistic approach to delivering coordinated care for special populations including seniors and adults with disabilities. The Department plans to work with the other provider organizations not selected in the first round to explore possible enhancements to the project proposals.
The Innovations Project is one of several initiatives the state is employing to meet the requirements of the state’s 2011 Medicaid reform law to enroll 50% of clients into care coordination. The goal is to redesign the healthcare delivery system so that is more patient-centered, with a focus on improved health outcomes and evidence-based treatments, enhanced patient access, and patient safety.
Yesterday, IMCHC and Health & Disability Advocates co-facilitated a webinar on Medicaid servive delivery models, available from our webiste. This webinar provides insight on the distinctions between these models, including CCEs.
Affordable Care Act Resources
Becoming an expert on the Affordable Care Act can be a daunting task. Fortunately, IMCHC has released a range of resources on the law which make it easier than ever to wrap your head around this complex law. All of the resources listed below can be found on our health care reform website.
Our new ACA podcasts are short, easy to understand, and to the point. These recordings, available on iTunes, will allow you to master this law as long as you have your phone or mp3 player!
Please help us to improve this new resource by sending any feedback to Kathy Waligora.
Illinois Women WIN with Health Care Reform palm cards are now available in English and Spanish. This easy to carry resource makes it easy for women to share new knowledge, including why health reform is important to women's health, with friends and family.
Order yours online today. Shipping is free for IMCHC members, $5.00 for non-members. Not a member? Become one today!
IMCHC’s Provider Toolkit on the Affordable Care Act is a comprehensive guide to the law and implementation in Illinois. Recently updated, it contains even more resources for communicating the benefits of the law.
Finally, we are also available to facilitate free, customized presentations, webinars, or conference calls for any agency or group hoping to understand the law and implementation in Illinois. To schedule a presentation, please download this form and return to Kathy Waligora.