information provided by the Office of the Governor
ROCKFORD, Ill. (February 5, 2019) — Surrounded by healthcare providers and HIV prevention advocates at the Winnebago County Health Department on February 1, Governor JB Pritzker took executive action strengthening the state’s commitment to ending the HIV epidemic that has affected nearly 40,000 Illinois residents.
“Over the past few years we’ve seen HIV prevention funding dry up, HIV testing rates go down, and HIV prevention and treatment agencies lay off staff,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “Now is not the time to back down from this fight. Now is the time to double down. This executive order defines the state’s commitment to the HIV epidemic and serves as a first step in ensuring the state is good partner in this fight.”
With today’s executive order, the state will take advantage of opportunities to improve treatment. With Medicaid providing health insurance for 23,748 Illinoisans living with HIV in FY17, the state-run program is the largest payer for HIV care in the state and a vital partner in ending the HIV epidemic.
Committing to ending the HIV epidemic, Gov. Pritzker signed Executive Order 2019-08, which will:
- Invest in programs and services to end the epidemic.
Investments will include prevention measures the Rauner administration had discontinued, including funding for increased HIV testing, PrEP, the African American HIV/AIDS Response Act, and other public health initiatives. Additionally, people living with HIV along with their healthcare providers will be invested and supported in achieving undetectable viral loads.
- Monitor viral load metrics.
The Department of Public Health and the Department of Healthcare and Family Services, in conjunction with the contracted Medicaid Managed Care Organizations (MMCOs), shall, within 90 days of the effective date of this Executive Order, deliver a report to the Governor containing a plan for the MMCOs to share data with the State in accordance with all laws and regulations governing health privacy, including a viral load metric, so that the State can monitor progress to ensure Illinoisans living with HIV have access to the healthcare they need to keep their viral loads at zero.