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The ICS Office has received many phone calls from individuals confusing Medicare and Medicaid. This section has been included to ensure that when speaking with a legislator you discuss the correct program.
Medicare is a federal healthcare program for seniors over the age of 61. If you are having issues with Medicare, please do not bring them up to your State Senator or State Representative. Since Medicare is a federal program, a state legislator will be unable to assist you. They will refer you to your United States Senator or United States Congressman. If you need assistance addressing a Medicare issue with your United States Senator or United States Congressman, do not hesitate to reach out to ICS staff.
Medicaid is the State of Illinois healthcare program for low-income individuals. The services of chiropractic physicians are only covered under Medicaid for children under the age of 18, and then only one spinal adjustment is covered. Currently, adult chiropractic care is not covered under the Medicaid program. Adult chiropractic was removed as part of the 2012 Medicaid Reforms. Unfortunately, due to the State fiscal climate, asking the State to cover adult chiropractic has become difficult at this time.
Despite these challenges, the ICS has been meeting with representatives from the Department of Healthcare and Family Services, the state agency that administers Medicaid, regarding the benefits of recognizing chiropractic physicians as Medicaid providers. This would allow Medicaid patients the ability to see a chiropractic care physician for their healthcare; currently, a Medicaid recipient cannot make that choice. Including chiropractic physicians in the adult Medicaid system would result in significant cost savings by diverting some patients, particularly those with back pain, from costly surgery and medication. In addition, the wisdom of using non-narcotic treatment is obvious in the face of the well-publicized opioid addiction epidemic. The conversations with the Department of Healthcare and Family Services continue today.