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Get Covered Illinois Has Launched

Posted: October  16, 2013 by UI Health Marketing

October 1st marked the date for uninsured residents to enroll for health coverage under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Had this date come sooner or quality, affordable coverage been available only a few months earlier for the uninsured, Maria Hernandez might still be alive today. This was the message her mother, Mirna Flores, shared with media while holding Maria's photo as she told her daughter's story.

Flores, Dr. Robert Winn, Associate Vice President for Community Based Practice for the University of Illinois Hospital & Health Sciences System in Chicago, and representatives of the American Lung Association in Greater Chicago, were invited to join Illinois Governor Pat Quinn at a press conference on October 1 as he launched "Get Covered Illinois," the state's education and enrollment online platform.

She and Dr. Winn stood with the Governor, as he announced his online enrollment program. After he spoke, Flores and Dr. Winn spoke with attendees and Chicago media about why they support the Lung Association and Affordable Care Act.

"In addition to research and educational programming, the American Lung Association advocates for those impacted by lung disease, like Mirna's daughter, Maria Hernandez. Maria suffered a fatal asthma attack in May of 2013. She was smart, beautiful, adventurous, fun-loving, and just 31 years old. Maria was also uninsured, which prevented her from accessing the healthcare and medications she needed to manager her asthma," said Dr. Winn.

"I'm here to share my daughter's story. I'm so glad that this program is now available to everyone. I hope no family goes through what we went through. Losing Maria the way we did could have been prevented and now I hope everyone, young people, take advantage of the opportunity to have health insurance," said Flores.

The public health community, including the American Lung Association, has stood firmly behind the Affordable Care Act. It will benefit millions of Americans with asthma, lung cancer and other lung diseases.

Millions who couldn't get health insurance before will now be able to. This means that individuals with asthma and other respiratory conditions will have options for receiving medical treatment other than going to the ER.

To find out more about the Affordable Care Act and how to get insured, visit our Health Insurance Information page.  

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