February 2012 - Just the Facts (pdf)


Total cases receiving Public Assistance in Illinois dropped by 1,329 (4,852 persons) in February 2012. TANF and SNAP cases were primarily responsible for the decrease. Aided cases numbered 1,653,785 (2,987,079 persons), up 3.8 percent from year-earlier totals.

Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)


  • Total TANF Benefits: A 345 case (1,084 person) decrease left a total 49,632 families (127,296 persons) receiving TANF benefits in February. The caseload was 20.0 percent higher than the February 2011 total.
  • "0" Grant Cases: There were 3,943 "0" grant cases (11,007 persons) included this month, up 99 cases and 249 persons from January 2012.
  • TANF-Basic: TANF-Basic (primarily single-parent) families dropped by 371 cases (1,205 persons) to 48,256 cases (121,553 persons).
  • Two-Parent Cases: Two-parent cases increased by 26 (91 persons) to a total of 1,376 cases (5,743 persons) in February 2012.

TANF Program Detail

  • Applications: The number of TANF applications received in February fell by 1,363 to a total of 7,379. New applications decreased and re-applications decreased. Receipts included: 6,335 applications for the Basic sector and 1,044 applications for the two-parent sector. There were 2,198 applications pending for the combined program this month, a decrease of 280 applications from January levels.
  • Approvals: There were 2,386 assistance approvals this month, including 1,614 new grants (down 244 from January 2012) and 772 reinstatements (down 55). A reinstatement is defined as approval of any case that was active within the previous 24 months.

Reasons for Case Openings

There were 2,715 February 2012 TANF openings for which reasons were available, down 584 from the January level. This total includes 2,591 cases from the Basic sector and 124 cases from the two-parent sector. Reasons for opening cases included the following:


Reinstatement after remedying

previous non-cooperations

Living below agency standards 82.7
Loss of employment 0.8
Loss of other benefits 1.8
Parent leaving home 0.0
Increased medical needs 5.7
Loss of unemployment benefits 3.0
All other reasons 4.5

Reasons for Case Closings

Reasons were available for 2,856 February 2012 TANF case closings - up by 337 cases from January. This total includes 2,703 cases from the Basic sector and 153 cases from the two-parent sector. Reasons for closing cases included the following:

Earned income 27.0
Other financial 5.6
Non-compliance* 37.1
Non-financial 30.3

* 39 cases canceled in January 2012 for non-compliance related reasons were reinstated by February 2012 after complying. These cases had no break in assistance.

Assistance to the Aged, Blind or Disabled (AABD)

The total number of February 2012 AABD cases was down 82 or 0.3 percent from the number of cases a year earlier. The decrease was largely attributable to Old Age Assistance, where the number of cases fell 125 or 2.2 percent from February 2011 levels.

  • One-Person AABD Cases: One-person cases receiving grants through AABD dropped by 77 in February to a total of 29,306. This total includes 5,528 persons who qualified for Old Age Assistance; 107 persons who qualified for Blind Assistance; and 23,671 persons who qualified for Disability Assistance.
  • "0" Grant Status: Persons in "0" grant status rose by 36 to 1,925.
  • State Supplemental Payments: Individuals receiving State Supplemental Payments were down 103 to 27,381.

Medical Assistance - No Grant

AABD clients were responsible for an increase of 1,311 cases counted as receiving Medical Assistance in February 2012. The number of persons fell by 247. This resulted in a program total of 1,297,665 cases (2,478,992 persons).

  • MANG: MANG recipients represent 78 percent of total cases and 83 percent of total persons. MANG cases increased 5.5 percent from their February 2011 levels, when they represented 78 percent of all cases.
  • Family Health Plans: Families increased by 36 to 778,487 in February 2012.
  • AABD Clients: AABD clients who were categorically qualified for Medical Only rose by 1,449 to 463,462 one-person cases. This total includes 147,985 cases for which Qualified Medical Beneficiary (QMB) payments were made, and 35,878 beneficiaries of Specified Low Income Beneficiary (SLIB) payments for Medicare coverage. AABD Group Care clients totaled 68,222.
  • Foster Care: Foster Care Assistance aided 46,083 children during this time period.
  • GA: State funding for the cash portion of the General Assistance (GA) program was eliminated July 1, 2011. All Downstate assistance was discontinued. Chicago clients will continue to receive Medical and SNAP benefits. In February 2012, a total 8,906 one-person cases received medical assistance only through Transitional Assistance (TA). The Number of families receiving medical assistance only through Family and Children's Assistance (F&CA) totaled 727 (929 persons).
  • P3 Cases: Cash Assistance for Chicago PE cases was also eliminated July 1, 2011. These are disabled one-person cases with SSI applications or appeals pending. A total of 200 P3 cases were aided in February.

Applications - All Programs

  • In February 2012, application receipts for all programs excluding SNAP decreased by 6,387 to a total of 57,898. This count includes: 44,518 applications for Medical Assistance, 7,379 for TANF, 4,179 for AABD grants, and 1,822 for TA/F&CA in Chicago. SNAP applications received through Intake and Income Maintenance rose by 26,997 to 187,112.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • SNAP Assistance was given to 892,188 Illinois households in February 2012. Of this total, 615,206 households also received cash or medical assistance through other public assistance programs.
  • There were 276,982 additional households not receiving other Public Assistance, which receive Non-Assistance SNAP administered by the Department of Human Services.

AllKids (KidCare)

  • KidCare, which began in January 1998, extends Medical coverage by expanding income eligibility standards (based upon the Federal Poverty Level) for pregnant women, infants born to Medical-eligible pregnant women, and certain other children under the age of 19.
  • Between January 5, 1998 and February 1, 2012 a total of 126,192 TANF-Medical Only persons were enrolled in KidCare Phase I due to this expansion of eligibility. Included in this total are 7,380 in the Moms and Babies program and 118,812 in the Assist program.
  • Cases ineligible for Medicaid due to excess income may be eligible for KidCare Phase II. October 1998 was the first month of enrollment. Phase II also requires co-pays and sometimes premiums. KidCare Share and KidCare Premium provide essentially the same benefits as Medical Assistance. A total of 31,546 Share and 31,751 Premium persons had enrolled by February 1. KidCare Rebate reimburses for a portion of health insurance premiums paid for eligible children. Rebate persons totaled 484.

Fiscal Year 2012 Summary of Cases and Persons as of February 2012

TANF (PAYMENT CASES) 45,689 116,289
P3 200 200
ZERO GRANTS TANF 3,943 11,007
ZERO GRANTS AABD 1,925 1,925
FAMILY HEALTH PLANS 778,487 1,959,612
AABD MANG 463,462 463,462
NON-ASSISTANCE SNAP 276,982 351,285
FOSTER CARE 46,083 46,083
TOTAL 1,654,304 2,987,602

Note: Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) replaced Aid to Families with Dependent Children effective July 1, 1997. Programs terminated in this change comprised AFDC-MAG, AFDC "0" grants, AFDC MANG, and Medical Extensions (AFDC).

Child Care

Child Care Services are available to families with income below 50 percent of the state median. Families must be working or enrolled in approved education or training activities. Families cost-share with co-payments based on income, family size and number of children in care. Services are delivered through a certificate program and a site-administered contract system.

  • The Certificate Program eligibility is determined by resource and referral agencies. Parents choose subsidized full or part-time care from any legal care provider that meets their needs. Providers include child-care centers, family homes, group child-care home and in-home and relative care. In February 2012, an estimated 153,352 children were served by certificate.
  • The Site-Administered Contract Program serves families through a statewide network of contracted licensed centers and family homes. Families apply for care directly with the contracted providers and eligibility is determined on-site by the provider. In February 2012 an estimated 9,138 children were served by contract.
  • The Migrant Head Start Program provides child care and health and social services for preschool children of migrant and seasonal farm workers. Services are provided by local community based agencies. The program is federally funded and serves approximately 450 children during the harvest season.

Emergency Food, Shelter and Support

Homeless families and individuals receive food, shelter and support services through local not-for-profit organizations. A "continuum of care" includes emergency and transitional housing and assistance in gaining self-sufficiency and permanent housing.

  • The Emergency and Transitional Housing Program served 6,627 households in shelters during July-September 2012. Of those, 1,197 were households with children.
  • The Emergency Food Program served 768,346 households from October-December 2011.
  • The Homeless Prevention Program helps families in existing homes and helps others secure affordable housing. During October-September 2011, 473 households were served. Of those, 128 were families (Households with children under age 18).
  • The Supportive Housing Program funds governments and agencies which serve families and transitional facility residents. In October-December 2011, 587,666 nights of Supportive Housing were provided.
  • The Refugee and Immigrant Citizenship Initiative funds the provision of English language, civics and U.S. history instruction as well as application services. During October-December 2011, 1,639 clients had received instruction and 409 were assisted with their citizenship applications.
  • Of the refugees served, 315 entered employment, and 201 retained jobs 90 days. The average wage earned was $8.83 an hour. 201 received health benefits and 176 had their cash assistance terminated in the October 2011-January 2012 period.
  • The Outreach and Interpretation project assures access to IDHS benefits. In the October-December 2011 period, 15,685 clients received case management, 2,604 received interpreter service, and 8,392 received translation service.
  • During the April - June 2011 quarter, the five suburban health clinics served 7,585 uninsured immigrants.

Social Service Block Grants

Service funding is provided through the Federal Title XX Social Services Block Grant to manage and monitor contracts which help customers achieve economic self-support and prevent or remedy abuse and neglect.

  • Crisis Nurseries served an estimated 417 customers during the October -December 2011 quarter.
  • The Estimated Donated Funds Initiative aided 9,984 customers with 58,057 rides provided for Seniors during the October-December 2011 quarter.

Early Intervention

The Illinois Early Intervention program serves Children under three years of age who are experiencing developmental delays in one or more of the following areas: cognitive development; physical development; language and speech development; psychosocial development; and self-help skills. Early Intervention is part of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA Part C) which covers both Part C infants and toddlers as well as Part B Special Education. Annually Early intervention serves approximately 20,000 children across the state and maintains 25 Child and Family Connections (CFC) Offices throughout the state to handle referrals, program intake, and service coordination for children with Individual Family Service Plans (IFSP's).

Early Intervention services include, but are not limited to: developmental evaluations and assessments, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech/language therapy, developmental therapy, service coordination, psychological services and social work services. The cost of some services are paid by the program and provided to families at no cost. These include evaluation, assessment, development of a service plan, and service coordination. Ongoing Early Intervention services are paid for by the family's health insurance, when appropriate, government insurance (Kid Care), and program funds. Families contribute to the cost of services by paying fees based on a sliding scale.

Program Statistics

Referrals 3,255 2,708 2,763
Active IFSP's 18,775 18,855 18,723
0-3 Participation Rate 3.43% 3.45% 3.42%
Under 1 Participation Rate 1.02% 1.06% 1.10%
% with Medicaid 50.8% 50.7% 49.6%
% with Insurance 36.3% 36.6% 36.9%
% with Fees 27.9% 27.8% 27.7%

What's New in Early Intervention

Currently the Early Intervention program is reviewing and implementing new federal regulations that were released late 2011. This review will also involve a complete review and updating of the CFC Policies and Procedures Manual to ensure compliance with all new or modified regulations. All required revisions must be in place by July 1, 2012.

Women, Infants and Children (WIC)

The purpose of WIC is to provide supplemental foods, nutrition education and breastfeeding promotion and support, and referral/access to health services for income eligible pregnant, postpartum, breastfeeding women, infants and children. The program has been housed under the Department of Human Services for the last 14 years. In order to be eligible, participants must be at 185% of the federal poverty level; be a resident of the State of Illinois; and must be categorically eligible (pregnant, breastfeeding postpartum, non breastfeeding postpartum, Infants (0-1), Children (1-5).

Program Statistics

Pregnant Women 32,429
Breastfeeding Women 16,690
Postpartum Women 18,972
Infants 76,982
Children 147,321

What's New in WIC

PCS/PCE is in McLean, St. Clair, Kane, Lake Counties and the Roseland WIC Clinic in Chicago.

Participant-Centered Nutrition Education (PCE) is a comprehensive, outcome-based model developed by Altarum Institute to promote the adoption of positive nutrition- and health-related behaviors by Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) families. PCE is a comprehensive systems change model for participant interaction that touches upon all aspects of WIC functions and service delivery. PCE puts the participant at the core of WIC service delivery and targets the most important determinants of behavior change: self-efficacy, skill building, and readiness to change. PCE focuses on a person's capacities, strengths and developmental needs, rather than solely on problems, risks or negative behaviors.

Within the PCE framework, the participant and the WIC staff form a partnership to engage in interactive discussions based on the particular needs and circumstances of the participant. This approach contrasts with the traditional, didactic WIC assessment and education model, which places the nutrition educator in an authoritative position, providing information and direction to the participant. Although the didactic approach is somewhat successful in delivering information and increasing nutrition knowledge, it is less effective at promoting real behavior change.

Family Case Management

The program target population is low income families (below 200% of the federal poverty level) with a pregnant woman, an infant or a child with a high-risk condition. The goals of the program are to help women have healthy babies and to reduce the rates of infant mortality and very low birth weight. To achieve these goals the program conducts outreach activities to inform expectant women and new mothers of available services and then assists them with obtaining prenatal and well-child care. The program works with community agencies to address barriers to accessing medical services, such as child care, transportation, housing, food, mental health needs and substance abuse services. Services are provided statewide through local health departments, federally qualified health centers and community-based organizations. Home visits by a public health nurse are provided to the families of infants with medical problems.

Program Statistics - FCM Active Participant Counts for January 2012

Cook County
Children 10,920 2,573
Infants 23,257 2,655
Pregnant 12,052 1,342
Children 18,343 2,581
Infants 39,600 3,256
Pregnant 20,747 1,509
Children 29,263 5,154
Infants 62,857 5,911
Pregnant 32,799 2,851

Program Accomplishments

Family Case Management has contributed to the overall reduction in the state's infant mortality and has reduced expenditures for medical assistance during the first year of life. Program outcomes are more effective in the integrated system of Family Case Management and WIC. Recent statistics show:

  • The infant mortality rate is 50 to 70% lower
  • The rate of premature birth is 60 to 70% lower
  • Medicaid expenditures for health care in the first year of life are up to 50% lower
  • Participation in WIC and FCM saves Illinois an average of $200 million each year in Medicaid expenses

Bureau of Program & Performance Management