ILLINOIS — Unvaccinated Illinoisans might quickly be paying their very own hospital payments, whether or not or not they’ve medical health insurance. A brand new invoice proposed by State Rep. Jonathan Carroll, a Northbrook Democrat, would require anybody who’s eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine, however who chooses to not get one, to pay out-of-pocket if they’re hospitalized with COVID-19.
If handed, the modification to the Illinois Insurance Code would go into impact with insurance policies issued or renewed after Jan. 1, 2023.
Calling COVID-19 a “disease of the unvaccinated,” Carroll advised the Chicago Sun-Times, “You choose not to get vaccinated, then you’re also going to assume the risk that if you do catch COVID, and you get sick, the responsibility is on you.”
Patch has reached out to Carroll’s office, and any additional remark will probably be added right here.
Republicans have accused Carroll’s invoice of searching for to take “health care away from Illinoisans,” and it’s prone to face important authorized challenges. The Affordable Care Act, generally referred to as Obamacare, requires well being insurers to cover pre-existing situations and forbids them from terminating protection as a result of COVID-19 or every other analysis.
The proposal comes after Illinois reported a brand new spike in coronavirus instances that officers say is probably going due, partially, to vacation journey and Thanksgiving gatherings. State well being officers are additionally looking out for the brand new omicron variant not too long ago recognized by the World Health Organization.
Health officers say omicron is probably going extra transmissible than even the delta variant, however early reviews from South Africa — the place omicron was first recognized — indicate it may actually be milder. Scientists and well being officers say it is too quickly to know for certain, since deaths and hospitalizations usually lag behind instances, however they anticipate to know extra in a matter of weeks.
As of Friday, 2,263 folks have been hospitalized with COVID-19 statewide, together with 579 in intensive care and 256 on ventilators. That represents an 11 p.c improve from Friday.
Officials stated 13 p.c of hospital beds and 14 p.c of ICU beds stay accessible throughout Illinois — for COVID sufferers and all others.
More than 17.7 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered in Illinois since they grew to become accessible earlier this year, and, as of Tuesday, 58.7 p.c of Illinoisans have been absolutely vaccinated. More than 2.1 million booster doses have additionally been administered, following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s suggestion that every one Americans get a booster shot to guard towards the omicron variant.
More than 1.85 million instances of the coronavirus have been reported in Illinois because the pandemic started, and 26,620 Illinoisans have died from the illness, not together with one other 2,999 possible COVID-19 deaths.