Gov. Rick Snyder’s 2018-19 budget proposal including sufficient funding to maintain the Healthy Michigan Plan is a vital step in ensuring health care coverage for more than 650,000 low-income Michiganders and helps hold down insurance rates for others, the Michigan Association of Health Plans (MAHP) said today.
“Healthy Michigan Plan has been a major success, and is one of Gov. Rick Snyder’s most important accomplishments,” said Dominick Pallone, executive director of MAHP. “We thank the governor for his commitment to this important component of Michigan’s overall health care system, which assures health care to many who would be otherwise unable to afford it. The plan helps hold down medical costs for the state as a whole by reducing uncompensated care often delivered in high-cost ways, such as emergency rooms, and by allowing delivery of preventative care, such as diabetes treatments that help patients avoid amputations. Those savings reduce overall health care costs, with the savings passed on to those covered by employers and in the individual market.”
“Ensuring this population in Michigan keeps lowers uncompensated care, keeping the costs of this care out of the broader economy, helping businesses with maintaining affordable care for their employees,” said Pallone.
Healthy Michigan Plan provides Medicaid coverage to those making under 138 percent of the state’s poverty level – about $16,000 for a single person or $33,000 for a family of four. A majority of those who are covered by the plan are working in low-income jobs that do not provide health care, often in rural communities or inner cities. Others covered are disabled, too sick to work or are in school.
According to the New England Journal of Medicine, Michigan has benefited from the Healthy Michigan Plan by reducing state spending by $235 million in areas such as state mental health and correctional health programs as they are covered through Health Michigan. Low-income adults have also been able to shift spending from health care services to personal spending of household needs, leading to increased state income and sales tax revenues, further offsetting Medicaid expansion costs.