Health Benefit Coverage for Immigrant Seniors: Enrollment Pause

Illinois Department of Human Services logo
Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services logo

11/21/2023

Policy Memo

Summary:

  • Effective 11/07/2023, applications for the Health Benefits for Immigrant Seniors (HBIS) program will no longer be accepted.
  • Customers currently enrolled in the HBIS program will remain eligible for medical coverage.
  • ILIES-285745 Data Fix will update IES to deny any new approvals after 11/6/2023 at 5pm.

This memo provides updated policy guidance for the HBIS program and the following Policy Memo: REVISION: New Health Benefit Coverage for Immigrant Seniors dated 01/06/2021.


The Health Benefits for Immigrant Seniors (HBIS) program covers noncitizens aged 65 and over who do not meet immigration status for Medicaid.

Effective 11/07/2023, applications for the HBIS program will (temporarily) no longer be accepted. A greater than anticipated number of HBIS eligible individuals enrolled early upon the program's implementation and necessitated more services than expected. Enrollment for HBIS is being paused due to having met an enrollment cap of 16,500 which was necessary because the program is solely state funded thus limiting further expansion of the program at this time. Customers currently enrolled in the HBIS program will remain eligible for medical coverage.

Transitions from Health Benefit Coverage for Immigrant Adults (HBIA), ages 42 to 64, to Health Benefits for Immigrant Seniors (HBIS), aged 65 +, due to age will still be allowed.

Processing Applications for Health Benefits for Immigrant Seniors

HBIS applications with a submit date prior to 11/06/2023 at 5 p.m. should be processed and may be eligible for approval if the customer meets program criteria.

Example: Application for HBIS is received on 11/03/2023 and processed on 11/07/2023. The application may be approved if the customer meets HBIS eligibility criteria.

HBIS applications with a submit date on or after 11/06/2023 at 5 p.m. should be processed and will not be eligible for approval. The Integrated Eligibility System (IES) will generate a notice stating, "Enrollment cap for State Non-Citizen Program benefits has been reached and no additional approvals are allowed". Staff should document the denial reason in Case Comments.

  • ILIES-285745 Data Fix will update IES to deny any new approvals after 11/6/2023 at 5pm. However, caseworkers need to review certification status to ensure accurate results.

Example: Application for HBIS is received on 11/07/2023 and processed on 11/07/2023. The application will be denied, and the denial notice will be sent.

Note: Manual Release updates and amendments to PM/WAG to follow.

[signed copy on file]

Dulce Quintero

Secretary-Designate, Illinois Department of Human Services

Theresa Eagleson

Director, Healthcare and Family Services