Gov. Rick Snyder signed a law last Friday that places an 80-hour per month work requirement in order to receive Medicaid coverage.
Advocates for the poor are blasting Snyder’s support for the requirements. They say it’s an about-face for the governor, who championed the 2013 expansion of Medicaid through his Healthy Michigan Plan. They say the work requirements put the healthcare of close to 700,000 people at risk.
Proponents of the new law say, conversely, that it could actually ensure the future of Healthy Michigan by cutting some of the state’s costs related to the program. The program automatically goes away if the state’s costs outweigh the money it saves.
Detroit Today host Stephen Henderson speaks with Gilda Jacobs, executive director of the Michigan League for Public Policy, and Tom Buchmueller, IHPI member and a health economist for the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business.
Both guests believe this new law will end up affecting all Michigan residents in some way or another due to spillover effects.
“We really feel very strongly that the governor should not have signed this bill,” says Jacobs. “This is just a pocketbook issue…This bill does nothing to address healthcare and improvements in healthcare. What it does is create barriers for people to have healthcare, perhaps eventually.”
“Medicaid expansion has been a really positive thing for the Michigan economy,” says Buchmueller. “It has been about $3 billion dollars of federal funding coming in to support the program so that obviously pays for care but it creates spillover benefits in terms of increased employment not only in the healthcare sector but more broadly.”
Follow the link below to listen to the full conversation.