Failure to pass state Medicaid expansion hurts Michigan students

By delaying action, the state Senate is preventing hundreds of thousands of children and their families who face daily struggles from getting the care and treatment that can help improve their lives. A lack of health care prevents students from achieving their fullest potential in the classroom.

Michigan Senate Republicans are delaying a plan to expand health care access that received wide bipartisan support in the House. A diverse coalition of groups including small businesses, consumers and seniors groups, health care professionals and advocates, and many more have repeatedly called on the Senate to pass health care expansion.

This responsible proposal will help tens of thousands of children, disabled people and working Michiganders who have no insurance get the care and treatment they need.

This proposal will have a direct impact on the students who teachers and education support professionals serve every day — especially low-income children and those with disabled parents who don’t have health care.

By delaying action, the Senate is preventing hundreds of thousands of children and their families who face daily struggles from getting the care and treatment that can help improve their lives. A lack of health care prevents students from achieving their fullest potential in the classroom.

Nearly 500,000 Michiganders lack health insurance. They wait until a condition has become serious, even catastrophic, before they see a doctor. That means many of them get treatment in emergency rooms for illness and injuries that could have been treated and prevented. ER care is the most expensive care around, and these costs are passed along to everyone else. Expanding health care access will reduce costs for hospitals, businesses, taxpayers and people who already have insurance.

Senate Republicans are putting up the lone obstacle to the implementation of this critical plan, which will improve the lives of hundreds of thousands of Michiganders — including our students — and move our economy forward.

MEA members are urged to make their voices heard and tell the Senate to do the right thing, by supporting this plan without further delays. Contact your state senator and tell him or her:

  • Expanding access to health care will have a major and positive impact on Michigan citizens and our economy, and will help improve the lives of our children. Stalling action for purely political reasons is irresponsible and puts our children’s futures at risk.
  • Expanding access to health care will save money for Michiganders, by reducing the number of people who must get treatment at expensive emergency rooms. By delaying action on expansion, the Senate is robbing people of their health care. And by forcing Michigan citizens to get care at expensive emergency rooms, the Senate is shifting the cost burden to those with health insurance.  
  • Expanding access to health care will cost Michigan nothing until 2017, and very little after that. By delaying action, the Senate is sending billions of dollars every year to other states that could be coming to Michigan to help families in need.