October 2015 - Just the Facts


Total cases receiving Public Assistance in Illinois fell by 5,583 cases (6,099 persons) in October 2015. Non- Assistance SNAP cases were primarily responsible for the decrease. Aided cases numbered 2,036,142 (3,413,356 persons), up 1.3 percent from year-earlier totals.

Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)


  • Total TANF Benefits: A 868 case (2,203 person) decrease resulted in a total 40,781 families (109,631 persons) receiving TANF benefits in October. The caseload was 16.6 percent lower than the October 2014 total.
  • "0" Grant Cases: There were 4,835 "0" grant cases (13,693 persons) included this month, up 536 cases and 1,510 persons from September 2015.
  • TANF-Basic: TANF-Basic (primarily single-parent) families fell by 1,558 (3,912 persons) in October to 39,114 cases (102,209 persons).
  • Two-Parent Cases: Two-parent cases fell by 8 to a 1,667 total in October 2015. The number of persons was unchanged at 7,422.

TANF Program Detail

  • Applications: The number of TANF applications received in October fell by 623 to a total of 9,297. Both new applications and re-applications decreased. Receipts included 7,994 applications for the Basic sector and 1,303 applications for the two-parent sector. There were 2,397 applications pending for the combined program this month, a decrease of 203 from September levels.
  • Approvals: There were 2,325 assistance approvals this month, including 1,413 new grants (down 110 from September 2015) and 912 reinstatements (down 23). A reinstatement is defined as approval of any case that was active within the previous 24 months.

Reasons for Case Openings

There were 2,159 October 2015 TANF openings for which reasons were available, down 81 from the September level. This total includes 2,046 cases from the Basic sector and 113 cases from the two-parent sector. Reasons for opening cases included the following:

Reinstatement after remedying Previous non-cooperation 2.7
Living below agency standards 80.8
Loss of employment 4.6
Loss of other benefits 5.4
Parent leaving home 0.0
Increased medical needs 4.1
Loss of unemployment benefits 0.2
All other reasons 7.3

Reasons for Case Closings

Reasons were available for 3,043 October 2015 TANF case closings - down by 16 cases from September. This total includes 2,915 cases from the Basic sector and 128 cases from the two-parent sector. Reasons for closing cases included the following:

Earned Income 31.7
Other Financial 3.4
Non-compliance* 38.6
Non-financial 26.4

*59 cases canceled in September 2015 for non-compliance related reasons were reinstated by October after complying. These cases had no break in assistance.

Assistance to the Aged, Blind or Disabled (AABD)

The total number of October 2015 AABD cases was down 2,291 or 8.5 percent from the number of cases a year earlier. The decrease was largely attributable to Disability Assistance, where the number of cases fell 1,821 or 8.2 percent from October 2014 levels.

  • One-Person AABD Cases: One-person cases receiving grants through AABD fell by 9 in October to a total of 24,750. This total includes 4,405 persons who qualified for Old Age Assistance; 93 persons who qualified for Blind Assistance; and 20,252 persons who qualified for Disability Assistance.
  • "0" Grant Status: The number of persons in "0" grant status fell by 35 to 1,241.
  • State Supplemental Payments: The number of individuals receiving State Supplemental Payments rose by 26 to 23,509.

Medical Assistance - No Grant

Family Health Plan customers were responsible for a monthly decrease of 38 cases receiving Medical Assistance in October 2015. Persons decreased by 284. This resulted in a program total of 1,810,086 cases (3,066,815 persons). Of the total, 62,145 MANG cases and 93,408 MANG persons were in Kid Care, Disabled Worker, Breast and Cervical Cancer, and Department of Correction programs first included in July 2014. AABD MANG cases in these offices totaled 12,459. Additional FHP cases totaled 49,686. Additional FHP persons totaled 80,949.

  • MANG: MANG recipients represent 89 percent of total cases and 90 percent of total persons. MANG cases increased 6.6 percent from their October 2014 levels, when they represented 84 percent of all cases.
  • Family Health Plans: Families decreased by 437 to 1,315,403 from September to October 2015. Persons decreased by 683 to 2,572,132. These totals include two groups newly-eligible under the Affordable Care Act. The first group is Single Adults age 19 through 64, not otherwise eligible for other Medical Assistance with income at or below 138 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. Also added are Persons age 18 through 26 who were receiving Medicaid benefits when aged out of State Foster Care and who are not otherwise FHP or AABD clients.
  • AABD Clients: AABD customers who were categorically qualified for Medical Only rose by 582 to 454,705 one-person cases. AABD Group Care clients totaled 60,626.
  • Foster Care: Foster Care Assistance aided 39,978 children during this time period.

Applications - All Programs

  • In October 2015, application receipts for all programs excluding SNAP decreased by 6,442 to a total of 100,507. This count includes: 90,048 applications for Medical Assistance, 9,297 for TANF, and 1,162 for AABD grants. SNAP applications received through Intake and Income Maintenance increased by 5,057 to 146,077.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • SNAP Assistance was given to 1,049,384 Illinois households (2,007,492 persons) in October 2015. This is an increase of 0.3 percent (3,164 households) from October 2014 levels.
  • Of this total, 889,456 households (1,798,443 persons) also received cash or medical benefits through other public assistance programs. This is an increase of 9.0 percent (73,246 households) from October 2014 levels.
  • A total of 159,928 households (209,049 persons) received Non-Assistance SNAP in October 2015. This is a 32.3 percent (76,410 household) decrease from October 2014 levels.

All Kids (KidCare)

  • All Kids, 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 October 1, 2015 a total of 105,082 TANF-Medical Only persons were enrolled in All Kids Phase I due to this expansion of eligibility. Included in this total are 7,236 in the Moms and Babies program and 97,846 in the Assist program.
  • Cases ineligible for Medicaid due to excess income may be eligible for All Kids Phase II. October 1998 was the first month of enrollment. Phase II also requires co-pays and sometimes premiums. All Kids Share and All Kids Premium provide essentially the same benefits as Medical Assistance. A total of 18,522 Share and 33,309 Premium persons had enrolled by October 1.


Program Cases Persons
TANF (PAYMENT CASES) 35,946 95,938
ZERO GRANTS TANF 4,835 13,693
ZERO GRANTS AABD 1,315 1,315
FAMILY HEALTH PLANS 1,315,403 2,572,132
AABD MANG 454,705 454,705
NON-ASSISTANCE SNAP 159,928 209,049
FOSTER CARE 39,978 39,978
TOTAL 2,036,142 3,413,356

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 October 2015, an estimated 115,300 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 October 2015, an estimated 6,969 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 5,255 households in shelters during April-June 2015. Of those 1,280 were households with children.
  • The Emergency Food Program served 862,352 households from April-June 2015.
  • The Homeless Prevention Program helps families in existing homes and helps others secure affordable housing. During April-June 2015, 1,226 households were served. Of those, 765 were families (Households with children under age 18).
  • The Supportive Housing Program funds governments and agencies which serve families and transitional facility residents. In April-June 2015, 586,008 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 April-June 2015, 903 clients had received instruction. In the April-June 2015 quarter, 1,290 were assisted with their citizenship applications.
  • Of the refugees served, 1,472 entered employment, and 1,354 retained jobs 90 days.
  • The Outreach and Interpretation project assures access to IDHS benefits. In the April-June 2015 quarter, 13,280 clients received case management, 2,369 received interpreter service, and 1,610 received translation service.

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 455 customers during the April-June 2015 quarter.
  • The Estimated Donated Funds Initiative aided 4,081 customers with 58,780 rides provided for Seniors during the April-June 2015 quarter.

Early Intervention (EI)

The Illinois Early Intervention (EI) program serves infants and toddlers birth to 3 years old with developmental delays or disabilities and their family in or more of the following areas of development: adaptive; cognitive, communication/speech, physical and social emotional. EI is part of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Part C for Infants and Toddlers with Disabilities. Annually, the EI program serves approximately 21,000 children throughout the state and maintains 25 regional intake entities called Child and Family Connections (CFC) offices. CFCs handle referrals, intake and service coordination for infants and toddlers with Individualized Family Service Plans (IFSPs).

Early Intervention services include, but are not limited to: developmental evaluations and assessments, communication/speech therapy, developmental therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, service coordination, psychological and assistive technology. Evaluations, assessments, service plan development and service coordination are provided to families as no cost. Ongoing EI services are paid for by public insurance (Medicaid/All Kids), a family's private health insurance, when appropriate, state general revenue and other program funds. Families are assessed a family participation fee based on a sliding scale which considers their ability to pay.

Program Statistics

Indicator September 2015 SFY 2015 Average SFY 2014 Average SFY 2013 Average
Referrals 2,693 2,873 2,839 2,592
Active IFSP's 20,860 21,183 20,342 19,662
0-3 Participation Rate 4.09% 4.15% 3.99% 3.96%
Under 1 Participation Rate 1.17% 1.29% 1.24% 1.07%
% With Medicaid 58.8% 59.8% 61.1% 48.90%
% With Insurance 36.1% 35.7% 34.5% 36.70%
% With Fees 27.8% 27.8% 27.7% 27.40%

What's New in EI

Illinois submitted the first State Systemic Improvement Plan (SSIP) this spring. The SSIP is a comprehensive, multi-year plan based upon detailed data and infrastructure analysis. The plan will identify a focus for improvement and describe improvement strategies that will lead to a measurable child-based result. Strategies will support CFC offices and early intervention providers in implementing, scaling-up, and sustaining evidence-based practices that will result in improved outcomes for infants and toddlers with disabilities and their families. In February 2016, the EI Program will report on Phase II of the SSIP, which will identify changes to infrastructure, resources needed, expected outcomes, timeliness for completing improvement activities, and an evaluation plan.

Women Infants and Children (WIC)

The purpose of WIC is to provide nutrition education and counseling, breastfeeding promotion and support, nutritious food and referrals to services for eligible pregnant, breastfeeding and postpartum women, infants and children to age five. The program has been housed under the Department of Human Services since 1997. In order to be eligible, participants must be at 185% of the federal poverty level; be a resident of the State of Illinois; and have a nutrition risk.

Program Statistics

Eligibility Category Clients in September 2015
Pregnant Women 24,147
Breastfeeding Women 16,028
Postpartum Women 16,183
Infants 66,145
Children 113,465

What's New in WIC

In preparation for WIC Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT), which USDA has mandated by 2020, readiness activities are underway. Training is being provided to all WIC local agency providers on MIS changes which will allow grouping of WIC participants in the same family and synchronization of base dates. Both of these changes will facilitate readiness for EBT. Procurement for an EBT developer is in process.

Participant Centered Services (PCS) are being cultivated throughout the Illinois WIC Program. PCS 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. PCS is a comprehensive systems change model for participant interaction that touches upon all aspects of WIC functions and service delivery. PCS 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. PCS focuses on a person's capacities, strengths and developmental needs, rather than solely on problems, risks or negative behaviors.

Within the PCS 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

Category Medicaid Non-Medicaid
Cook County
Children 7,844 1,332
Infants 18,305 2,392
Pregnant 8,828 1,051
Children 9,367 1,188
Infants 33,417 3,130
Pregnant 15,321 1,352
Children 17,211 2,520
Infants 51,722 5,522
Pregnant 24,149 2,403

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

December 2015