Pritzker signs 'Healthcare Protection Act' into law

Governor J.B. Pritzker signed the new Healthcare Protection Act (HPA) into law on Wednesday, aiming to significantly improve healthcare services for Illinois residents.

The HPA comprises multiple bills, including a ban on step therapy. This practice requires patients to try and fail with less effective treatment options and medications before accessing care recommended by their doctors. Additionally, the HPA eliminates prior authorization requirements for urgent mental health care, ensuring timely treatment for those in need.

"The number one priority for everyone behind me and probably for all of you is making sure we continue to make healthcare more affordable and accessible," Pritzker said. "I know those sound like buzzwords in the political realm—accessible, affordability—but that is what we think about every day when we consider the challenges in the healthcare system."

As part of the HPA, junk insurance plans are now banned, and unchecked rate increases for large group insurance companies will come to an end. This move is expected to enhance the quality and affordability of healthcare for residents across the state.