Author Archives: Admin

We’ve Got You Covered!Health insurance for all stages of your life

September 26, 2022

Fall and winter are the busy seasons for us at Champaign County Health Care Consumers (CCHCC), as we gear up to help hundreds of local residents get their health insurance coverage during the Medicare and ACA Marketplace Open Enrollment periods.

CCHCC – which does not receive any federal or state funds – provides both direct services to local residents, and community education, so that everyone can make the best choices for affordable health insurance coverage.

CCHCC staff are the most experienced enrollment counselors in Champaign County, for Medicare, ACA Marketplace, and Medicaid insurance plans. Our services are provided for free to community members. With your support, CCHCC can provide free, vital direct services to keep our community covered.

Health insurance enrollment – We’ve got you covered! Health insurance enrollment work requires increasingly specialized knowledge and skills – whether for Medicare, or for the ACA Marketplace and Medicaid. Our federally-certified staff are the most experienced enrollment counselors in our community.

This means that anyone – young or old or in between; employed or unemployed; retired; low-income, middle-income, high income, or no income; currently insured or uninsured – can contact CCHCC and we will help them figure out what coverage is available to them, and we will help them get covered!

Medicare Open Enrollment – from October 15 through December 7. If you would like to change your Medicare Advantage plan or Part D prescription drug plan, you will have the opportunity to change for the 2023 plan year starting October 15 – December 7, 2022. CCHCC staff can help you compare plans and complete those enrollments. Even if you already like your plan, it is important to review it during open enrollment to make sure it will remain the same for the following year and continue to cover your medications and doctors.


Medicare Basics Workshop – at Champaign Public Library

September 13, 2022

Champaign County Health Care Consumers (CCHCC) knows how confusing it can be when you are ready to start receiving your Medicare health insurance benefit at age 65.
That is why CCHCC is teaming up with the Champaign Public Library and CRIS Healthy Aging to present a workshop on Medicare Basics.
If you are going to be new to Medicare, this workshop will be very helpful. Also, if you already have Medicare and preparing for Medicare Open Enrollment – which begins on October 15 – so that you can choose or evaluate a Part D plan, or you are considering a Medicare Advantage Plan, this workshop will also be helpful to you.
Please see below for the details about tomorrow’s Medicare Workshop.
WHAT:           Medicare Basics Workshop
WHEN:          Wednesday, September 14, 2022, 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
WHERE:        Champaign Public Library, Robeson Pavilion Room A & B
                        200 W. Green Street, Champaign, IL 61820

DETAILS: Join us, grab a cup of coffee, and learn the basics of Medicare!
Adani Sanchez, Client Services Coordinator for Champaign County Health Care Consumers, will share information on basics of Medicare, and Medicare’s Open Enrollment, October 15 –December 7. Representatives from CRIS Healthy Aging Center will also be available to share resources on how to navigate through Medicare and more. 
Need one-on-one Medicare assistance? Adani will also be available to answer your questions. Register for an appointment through the link below or call the library at 217-403-2070 for assistance. 

Sign up for Medicare Help
Parking is free, and the Library is accessible.
We hope you will join us!

Our area nursing homes are failing their patients

September 1, 2022

Ever since the Champaign County Board sold the county’s nursing home in 2018, the quality and options for skilled nursing care and rehab in Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs; also known as “nursing homes”) in Champaign County has declined steadily.
CCHCC strenuously opposed the sale of the Champaign County Nursing Home for exactly this reason. We opposed the sale of the County Nursing Home on principle, because our research showed that county nursing homes provide higher quality of care because they have better staffing ratios since they are not trying to make a profit, and we also opposed the sale to the particular buyer that the brokers found for the county (the Rothners), because of the horrendous track record of their nursing homes.
Not only does our county have fewer nursing homes as a result of the sale of the county nursing home, and therefore fewer beds, to help care for an increasing aging population and those who need rehabilitation following a hospital stay – the nursing homes that remain are now severely understaffed.
Understaffing of nursing homes has a direct impact on patient care. And while many might think that the understaffing is a result of the pandemic, the truth is that understaffing in our area nursing homes is not simply caused by the pandemic. Understaffing of nursing homes is often a business model for the for-profit nursing home companies.
A recent story on WCIA-TV shows an all-too-common nursing home horror story. This story features Lisa Dixon, who is the co-chair of the CCHCC Board of Directors, and her sister-in-law, Lori Dixon (she has end-stage MS), who was a patient at Savoy’s CU Nursing and Rehab facility. Check out the reporting by WCIA’s Renee Cooper.
This story is all too common, and it is happening to too many of our community members. And the actual situation was far worse than what the news story was able to cover.
What happened to the nursing homes in our community? Champaign County used to have a few more nursing homes than we have now.


CCHCC mourns brilliant and kind activist, Kathy Oberdeck

We have been graced by the steady, compassionate, and righteous presence of our friend and fellow activist, Kathryn Oberdeck.
Now, it is with heavy but grateful hearts, that Champaign County Health Care Consumers and our 5th & Hill Neighborhood Rights Campaign is mourning a beloved activist and dear friend, Kathy Oberdeck.
Kathy passed away at home on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, after a fierce battle with a very aggressive cancer.
As in all other aspects of her life, Kathy faced her cancer and end of life with tremendous grace and strength, and with deep gratitude for the communities she had become such an integral part of, here in Champaign-Urbana, and across the country and the world.
Kathy Oberdeck’s involvement with CCHCC and the 5th & Hill Neighborhood Rights Campaign began over six years ago, when Kathy reached out to me and asked if she could attend Campaign meetings. Our meetings at that time took place twice a month and they were at Mr. Pelmore’s home in the 5th & Hill Neighborhood. Kathy started attending meetings, and was immediately welcomed by the 5th & Hill resident leaders, who were pleased that someone at the University cared about their neighborhood and their struggle.
From the very beginning, Kathy impressed me and the resident leaders as a very intelligent, insightful, resourceful, and generous Historian, who demonstrated the researcher/practitioner model, and who was also a sensitive, patient, and effective teacher, helping me, our staff, and the neighborhood residents learn about the city and the history of the neighborhood and surrounding community.

Memorial Service for Kathy Oberdeck:

Below are the details for the memorial service for Kathy Oberdeck.

WHEN:  Friday, June 24, 2022

TIME: 11 a.m.

WHERE: St. Matthew Lutheran Church, 2200 S. Philo Road, Urbana

DETAILS:  Out of concern for those who are vulnerable, the family requests that attendees wear masks. The family will be setting up a scholarship fund at the university in Kathy’s memory. In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, the family requests that any memorials be made to that fund when it is set up, to Sola Gratia Farm or to Champaign County Health Care Consumers


45 Years of CCHCC’s Grassroots Organizing for Health Care Access and Justice!

June 2022

This year, Champaign County Health Care Consumers (CCHCC) is celebrating 45 years of grassroots organizing for health care access and justice! Thanks to your continued support and involvement, CCHCC has had a definitive and lasting impact on our local health care system and human services since 1977.

You might be surprised to know that many of the local programs and services that improve our community’s health, and that we now take for granted, came about as a result of CCHCC’s community organizing work. This includes services such as school breakfast programs in county schools, hospital financial assistance programs for low-income people, nurse-midwives programs, prenatal care for low-income women, public health for county residents, free dental care for low-income county children, and more! These, and many more programs, are lasting legacies which CCHCC, with your involvement and support, has given our community.

In addition, over the past 25 years, CCHCC has worked on significant environmental issues including protecting the Mahomet Aquifer, as well as forcing a clean-up of the toxic site in Champaign’s 5th & Hill neighborhood (our 5th & Hill Neighborhood Rights Campaign, which still continues its work). Additionally, CCHCC has helped bring the benefits of the Affordable Care Act to our community, helping to sign up thousands of community members for affordable health insurance. We have also started and continue to participate in ground-breaking initiatives to reduce incarceration rates and provide services in the Champaign County Jail, as well as working with individuals going through reentry in our community, following incarceration in prisons. And, during the pandemic, we have been working to help keep our community informed and to expand access to resources for hard-hit individuals and families, including providing direct financial assistance as a result of grants we were able to get.

From its inception, CCHCC has been committed to improving the health care system by making it more responsive to consumer needs. Often, this has required uncovering abuses within the systems and challenging unfair policies. Even though these protests have received the most media attention and fanfare, CCHCC is proudest of the program initiatives and positive developments with our local health care system that are a direct result of our work – work that involves bringing consumers together with health care providers to build enduring programs and services that improve people’s lives and health.


CCHCC Board and Staff – 1986.