State drug policy draws criticism

SPRINGFIELD – Mental health providers, patients and their families are fighting a state decision to restrict access to two anti-psychotic medications.

The Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services has said that after Oct. 17, Medicaid patients would no longer be able to get new prescriptions for Zyprexa and Seroquel without prior authorization from the state.

Christie plans cancer center

CHAMPAIGN – Christie Clinic says it plans to break ground next month on a cancer treatment center in downtown Champaign.

The new 4,300-square-foot facility will be built on part of Christie Clinic's parking lot at the corner of University Avenue and Randolph Street.

Medicare application a point of confusion

CHAMPAIGN – If there's one major point the folks at Champaign County Senior Services would love to get across right now about the new Medicare prescription drug coverage starting next year, it's about the Social Security "extra help" application many people received in the mail:

Don't pitch it! Fill it out and return it, they urge.

Medicare Part D enrollment begins Nov. 12

CHAMPAIGN – With her 65th birthday coming up in December, Janice Wilson of rural Atwood says she’s been deluged by mail and phone solicitors selling Medicare supplement insurance plans.

“Every time the phone rings, you think, oh no, not another one,” she says.

You want to talk marketing blitz?

Workshop to focus on drug coverage

SPRINGFIELD – Seniors, disabled persons and their families are invited to a free workshop on Saturday to learn more about upcoming changes in federal and state prescription drug coverage.

The workshop will be held at 201 Lincoln Square in Urbana from 9 a.m. to noon on Sept. 17.

Some on Urbana council hesitant about smoking ban

URBANA – Some Urbana City Council members are hesitant about enacting a ban on smoking in bars, restaurants and other public places, after the Champaign City Council failed to take any action on the issue this week.

But Urbana Mayor Laurel Prussing said she welcomes input on the issue and said the city council would likely hold a public hearing on the issue in coming weeks, similar to what occurred in Champaign on Tuesday night.

Proposed smoking ban fails in Champaign

CHAMPAIGN – Light up, everybody! Champaign apparently isn't going to become a smoke-free city in any way, shape or form.

In front of a standing-room-only crowd Tuesday night, the Champaign City Council narrowly rejected a proposal to ban smoking in city restaurants, bars and other public places.