December 2016 - Just the Facts

Just the Facts - December2016 (pdf)


Total cases receiving Public Assistance in Illinois fell by 61,340 cases (60,164 persons) in December 2016 from December 2015. Non-Assistance SNAP cases were primarily responsible for the decrease. Aided cases numbered 1,957,966 (3,321,328 persons), down 3.0 percent from year-earlier totals.

Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)


  • Total TANF Benefits: There were 30,426 TANF cases (81,179 persons) in December 2016, down 224 cases and 366 persons from November 2016. The caseload was 29.5 percent lower than the December 2015 total.
  • "0" Grant Cases: There were 3,013 "0" Grant cases (8,793 persons) in December 2016, down 31 cases and up 102 persons from November 2016.
  • TANF-Basic: TANF-Basic (primarily single-parent) families fell by 221 cases (358 persons) in December 2016 from November 2016 to 29,135 cases (75,290 persons).
  • Two-Parent Cases: Two-parent cases decreased by 3 (decreased 8 persons) in December 2016 from November 2016 to 1,291 cases (5,889 persons).

TANF Program Detail 

  • Applications: The number of TANF applications received in December 2016 decreased by 211 from November 2016 to a total of 7,917. New applications increased and re-applications decreased. Receipts included 6,799 applications for the Basic sector and 1,118 applications for the two-parent sector. There were 2,149 applications pending for the combined program this month, a decrease of 142 from November 2016 levels.
  • Approvals: There were 1,748 assistance approvals this month, including 1,025 new grants (down 148 from November 2016) and 723 reinstatements (down 60 from November 2016). A reinstatement is defined as approval of any case that was active within the previous 24 months.

Reasons for Case Openings

There were 21,876 December 2016 TANF openings for which reasons were available, down 243 from the November 2016 level. This total includes 1,777 cases from the Basic sector and 99 cases from the two-parent sector. Reasons for opening cases included the following:

Reinstatement after remedying previous non-cooperation  1.7
Living below agency standards  82.2
Loss of employment 0.5
Loss of other benefits  5.0
Parent leaving home 0.1
Increased medical needs  2.6
Loss of unemployment benefits  0.6
All other reasons  7.3

Reasons for Case Closings

Reasons were available for 2,133 December 2016 TANF case closings - down 62 cases from November 2016. This total includes 2,015 cases from the Basic sector and 118 cases from the two-parent sector. Reasons for closing cases included the following:

Earned income  36.4
Other financial  2.9
Non-compliance* 38.7
Non-financial  22.0

*32 cases canceled in November 2016 for non-compliance related reasons were reinstated by December 2016 after complying. These cases had no break in assistance.

Assistance to the Aged, Blind or Disabled (AABD)

The total number of December 2016 AABD cases was down 2,165 or 8.9 percent from the number of cases a year earlier. The decrease was largely attributable to Disability Assistance, where the number of cases fell 1424 or 7.1 percent from December 2015 levels.

  • One-Person AABD Cases: One-person cases receiving grants through AABD decreased by 1,180 in December 2016 from November 2016 to a total of 22,261. This total includes 3,613 persons who qualified for Old Age Assistance; 86 persons who qualified for Blind Assistance; and 18,562 persons who qualified for Disability Assistance.
  • "0" Grant Status: The number of persons in "0" grant status fell by 20 to 1,031 in December 2016 from November 2016.
  • State Supplemental Payments: The number of individuals receiving State Supplemental Payments decreased by 1,160 to 22,390 in December 2016 from November 2016.

Medical Assistance - No Grant

Disability Assistance customers were mainly responsible for a monthly decrease of 27,122 cases receiving Medical Assistance in December 2016. Persons decreased by 1,004. This resulted in a program total of 1,785,793 cases (3,059,324 persons). Of the total, 61,609 MANG cases and 89,388 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 14,976. Additional FHP cases totaled 41,304. Additional FHP persons totaled 69,083.

  • MANG: MANG recipients represent 91 percent of total cases and 92 percent of total persons in December 2016. MANG cases decreased 1.19 percent from their December 2015 levels, when they represented 89.5 percent of all cases.
  • Family Health Plans: Families decreased by 26,118 to 1,306,435 from November 2016 to December 2016. Persons stayed the same at 2,579,966. 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 decreased by 1,014 in December 2016 from November 2016 to 441,512 one-person cases. AABD Group Care clients totaled 59,301 in December 2016.
  • Foster Care: Foster Care Assistance aided 37,846 children in December 2016.

Applications - All Programs

In December 2016, application receipts for all programs excluding SNAP increased by 14,737 from November 2016 to a total of 111,694. This count includes: 103,040 applications for Medical Assistance, 7,917 for TANF, and 737 for AABD grants. SNAP applications received through Intake and Income Maintenance decreased by 657 from November 2016 to 138,283.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • SNAP Assistance was given to 995,683 Illinois households (1,917,143 persons) in December 2016. This is a decrease of 3.4 percent (34,570 households) from December 2015 levels.
  • Of this total, 876,330 households (1,759,286 persons) also received cash or medical benefits through other public assistance programs. This is a decrease of 3.36 percent (34,570 households) from December 2015 levels.
  • A total of 118,815 households (157,857 persons) received Non-Assistance SNAP in December 2016. This is a 19.4 percent (28,651 household) decrease from December 2015 levels.

All Kids (KidCare)

  • All Kids, which began in February 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 February 5, 1998 and December 1, 2016 a total of 114,597 TANF-Medical Only persons were enrolled in All Kids Phase I due to this expansion of eligibility. Included in this total are 6,555 in the Moms and Babies program and 108,042 in the Assist program.
  • Cases ineligible for Medicaid due to excess income may be eligible for All Kids Phase II. November 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 19,561 Share and 37,288 Premium persons had enrolled by December 1, 2016.


Program Cases Persons
TANF (PAYMENT CASES) 27,413 72,386
ZERO GRANTS TANF 3,013 8,793
ZERO GRANTS AABD 1,031 1,031
FAMILY HEALTH PLANS 1,306,435 2,579,966
AABD MANG 441,512 441,512
NON-ASSISTANCE SNAP 118,815 157,857
FOSTER CARE 37,846 37,846
TOTAL 1,957,966 3,321,328

Child Care

Child Care Services are available to families with income at or below 162 percent of the federal poverty level. 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 December 2016, an estimated 127,490 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 December 2016, an estimated 4,975 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.

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 6,719 households in shelters during July-September 2016. Of those 1,747 were households with children.
  • The Emergency Food Program served 731,679 households from July-September 2016.
  • The Homeless Prevention Program helps families in existing homes and helps others secure affordable housing. During July-September 2016, 114 households were served. Of those, 80 were families (Households with children under age 18).
  • The Supportive Housing Program funds governments and agencies which serve families and transitional facility residents. In July-September 2016, 459,253 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. This program has been suspended.
  • Of the refugees served, 565 entered employment, and 579 retained jobs 90 days from February -May 2016.
  • The Outreach and Interpretation project assures access to IDHS benefits. This program has been suspended.

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 447 customers during the July-September 2016 quarter.
  • The Estimated Donated Funds Initiative aided 3,689 customers with 52,546 rides provided for Senior's during the July-September 2016 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 one 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 other counseling services and assistive technology. Evaluations, assessments, service plan development and service coordination are provided to families at no cost. Ongoing EI services are paid for by public insurance (i.e., 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

Referrals 2,867 2,787 2,849
Active IFSP's 20,742 20,792 20,689
0-3 Participation Rate 4.44% 4.44% 4.45%
Under 1 Participation Rate 1.38% 1.40% 1.33%
% With Medicaid 58.8% 58.9% 58.6%
% With Insurance 37.2% 37.2% 36.8%
% With Fees 27.3% 27.1% 27.5%

What's New in EI

The Bureau, along with multiple stakeholder representatives, has been working to prepare for implementing the State Systemic Improvement Plan (SSIP) Phase II strategies in the 3 pilot Race To The Top Innovation Zones. An evaluation Team was created to create the necessary tool(s) to measure and report on the implementation. Each of the 3 pilot sites has also received training for their Local Leadership Teams who will be the lead evaluators of the implementation within their own geographic areas. In April 2017, the EI Program will submit Phase III of the SSIP, which will identify implementation steps taken for changes to infrastructure, resources needed, expected outcomes, timeliness showing completion of improvement activities, and an evaluation of the implementation 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

Pregnant Women 21,880
Breastfeeding Women 16,014
Postpartum Women 16,162
Infants 62,458
Children 106,824

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

FCM Active Participant Counts for September 2016

Cook County
Children 5,398 934
Infants 16,876 2,650
Pregnant 9,950 1,094
Children 7,388 772
Infants 30,187 3,513
Pregnant 15,589 1,258
Children 12,786 1,706
Infants 47,063 6,163
Pregnant 25,539 2,352

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. The last analysis conducted for SFY 2014 shows:

  • The very low birth weight rate is almost 50% lower
  • The rate of premature birth is almost 30% lower
  • Medicaid expenditures for health care in the first year of life are almost 20% lower
  • Over the last 14 years, participation in both WIC and FCM saved Illinois on average over $200 million each year in Medicaid expenses.

Bureau of Program & Performance Management