Legal Updates

What’s In It For You?

By now you’ve probably read a few new stories, several blog posts, many Facebook rants and a bazillion Twitter tweets about the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act.  We’re not going to add to the blogo-spew.  We’re just going to point you to a nifty little online tool that the Washington Post…

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Happy Changes to Illinois Criminal HIV Transmission Law

It’s hard to think of an Illinois law that we at AIDS Legal Council of Chicago have hated more than the Illinois Criminal Transmission of HIV statute.  This bit of fear-mongering legislation has been on the books for over 20 years, and it turns people with HIV into felons whenever they have any kind of “intimate contact” without…

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Big Changes Coming for People with Both Medicaid and Medicare

Let’s just say it: everyone hates managed care.  Yet more and more of us get shoved into it.  The latest victims: people who receive both Medicaid and Medicare.  It hasn’t happened yet, but it’s coming soon. The US Department of Health and Human Services is encouraging states to submit proposals for a Medicare-Medicaid Alignment Initiative. …

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A Movement to Reform State Laws

It seems the movement to reform state laws about HIV exposure — you know, the laws that turn people with HIV into felons if they spit on the wrong people — continues to pick up steam. Provincetown’s Edge newspaper just published an interesting story on the subject. It highlights some of the more egregious prosecutions…

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Obama Who?

Perhaps you recall last July the White House issued the first ever National HIV/AIDS Strategy for the United States. In it, the President called for the elimination of HIV criminal transmission laws, saying in part that such laws “may not have the desired effect and they may make people less willing to disclose their status…

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ADAP to the Rescue!

If you have private health insurance or Medicare, there are important changes in the Illinois AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) that may help you with some of your drug costs. Additionally, ADAP may make it possible for some people to afford comprehensive health insurance coverage under the new Illinois Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan (IPXP). First…

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Illinois Civil Unions are Almost here.

The AIDS Legal Council is excited about the recent passage of the Illinois Civil Union Act. Beginning in June of 2011 Illinois same-sex couples will be able to enter into legally-recognized civil unions “with all the obligations, responsibilities, protections, and benefits afforded or recognized by the law of Illinois to spouses.” Before entering into a…

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Health Care Reform Takes Effect Today … Sort Of

So you’ve probably heard lots of news stories telling you that many of the most important aspects of the Affordable Care Act going into effect today. For example, insurers can no longer deny insurance for children with pre-exisiting conditions. And insurers can’t put life-time caps on the benefits in their plans. That’s not quite the…

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A New National Strategy?

You’ve probably heard that the White House Office of National AIDS Policy just issued the National HIV/AIDS Strategy for the United States. Like many similar documents, it’s full of lofty language about all the marvelous things the federal government might consider doing to address the HIV epidemic. Those of you with a cynical side might…

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Another Crack in the Great Wall

The list of countries banning HIV-positive visitors continues to shrink. On April 19, the China State Council (analogous to the White House Cabinet) announced that it had approved the repeal of China’s 21-year-old HIV travel ban. Five days later Premier Wen Jiabao signed a decree making the policy change official — just in time for…

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