Governor Rick Snyder has signed the Healthy Michigan plan into law. The move brings health care to nearly 500,000 people in Michigan by expanding Medicaid coverage.
The governor’s office has said Healthy Michigan is expected to cover more than 320,000 Michiganders in its first year and is expected to eventually provide care for 470,000 people. Most of the Michigan residents covered by the new law work but earn about $15,000 per year.
Everyone covered by the plan will be required to share in the costs of their health care coverage. The governor’s office says there are also incentives for everyone covered by the plan to take responsibility for lifestyle choices and to maintain or improve their health.
Until now, Michigan residents without health insurance have often waited until their medical conditions were severe and have then gone to an emergency room for treatment.
Each year, Michigan hospitals provide more than $880 million dollars in care for which they’re not paid. The costs are passed along to businesses and individual residents through higher health insurance premiums. Healthy Michigan is expected to help reduce that amount of uncompensated care.
The Healthy Michigan plan, House Bill 4714, will become Public Act 107 of 2013 now that it’s become law.