Sign In

HFS logo

Provider Notice Issued 08/25/2020

Marc D. Smith, Acting Director                                                                 Theresa Eagleson, Director

Date:   August 25, 2020
To: All Medical Assistance Program Providers
Re: Managed Care Youth in Care Program to Begin September 1, 2020
The Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) announced that youth in the care of the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) will transition to the new YouthCare program on September 1, 2020. DCFS youth in care will be automatically enrolled in the YouthCare health plan.
YouthCare is a specialized HealthChoice Illinois Health Plan for DCFS youth, designed to improve access to care through active coordination and a more robust provider network. With YouthCare, DCFS youth will receive additional benefits, such as care coordination for behavioral health needs, including trauma-informed care. YouthCare also offers specialized programming for adoptive families, including an adoption-competent network of therapists to support the different phases of adoption and child development.
Who are Youth in Care?
Youth in care are youth for whom the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services has legal responsibility, living with foster parents, in group homes, or in residential settings. YouthCare will begin administering benefits for youth in care on September 1, 2020. The September 1, 2020 launch of YouthCare for youth in care has no impact on the continued coverage for former youth in care, which began February 1, 2020.
Who are Former Youth in Care?
Former youth in care are youth who have been adopted, are living with kinship providers, have returned to biological parents, and/or have left the DCFS system. All of these youth were in the care of DCFS previously. YouthCare has been administering benefits for former youth in care since February 1, 2020.
Continuity of Care Period
Providers do not need to immediately be contracted with YouthCare in order to serve children enrolled in YouthCare. YouthCare has an open network until February 28, 2021 for youth in care, which means provider claims for covered Medicaid services will be paid. YouthCare members will have a YouthCare ID Card. Providers must bill YouthCare for any services provided to YouthCare members. After February 28, 2021, providers will need to be contracted with YouthCare to receive payment for services to current youth in care.
YouthCare Provider Orientation Webinar
Providers are strongly encouraged to participate in the YouthCare Orientation Webinar. The Orientation Webinar will take approximately one hour and will introduce providers to YouthCare member eligibility requirements, the claims submission process, website, and the provider web portal. Orientations will continue throughout the month of August and September.
To register, please visit the Provider Training section at or go directly to:
 If you have questions or need help registering for the webinar, please call Provider Services at 8442892264 (TTY: 711) from 8:00 a.m. 6:00 p.m. (CST) Monday through Friday or email YouthCare at
Additionally, if providers have questions about YouthCare or would like to join the network, please call 844-289-2264 or email YouthCare at
Additional Resources:
·   To learn more about submitting claims to YouthCare, please review the billing instructions in our Provider Manual located at:
· Visit the DCFS managed care page at for updated information and additional resources.
With a diverse range of professionals now participating, YouthCare already offers more than three times as many providers as the outgoing system. That means new opportunities to direct vulnerable youth to broader and more specialized care options. As an added team of healthcare partners, care coordinators are also offering personalized and whole-person resources, especially for youth with complex and significant needs. YouthCare is enhanced care to help you better serve your patients and clients.
If you have not become part of YouthCare yet, we hope you will join today. Learn more and sign up here.
Theresa Eagleson
Illinois Department of Healthcare and
Family Services
Marc D. Smith
Acting Director
Illinois Department of Children and Family Services


 Need Assistance?

Illinois Healthcare and Family Services

JB Pritzker, Governor • Theresa Eagleson, Director