Bipartisan legislation safeguards access to care
LANSING, Mich., June 24, 2021 — With time running out for auto accident victims, state Rep. Julie M. Rogers (D-Kalamazoo) introduced House Bill 5125, which would give the Legislature time to fix a crisis that threatens access to life-saving care.
On July 1, Public Act 21 of 2019 will go into effect. Unfortunately, two provisions included in the law, a 45 percent reimbursement cap for specialized rehabilitation care and a 56-hour attendant care cap for family members and friends of injured survivors, will be devastating if not fixed. Rep. Rogers’ bill delays the implementation of these two provisions by one year, giving the Legislature time to do so. HB 5125 has garnered bipartisan support in the state House of Representatives and is co-sponsored by 38 House members.
“Make no mistake — if these two provisions aren’t delayed, health care providers including rehabilitation specialists and residential centers will be forced to shut their doors, Rogers said. “This would leave the most vulnerable with no place to go. This is why I introduced HB 5125 to delay the implementation of the fee schedule and the cap on home-based attendant care,” Rogers said. “I am calling for an immediate hearing on my bill and quick passage; and when session resumes following the summer break, we need to come together and find a sustainable, collaborative solution.”
HB 5125 only delays these two specific provisions of the auto insurance reform legislation that was signed into law in 2019. The 45 percent cap will force care providers to either discharge auto accident victims or go out of business entirely, leaving survivors with severely limited options for the specialized care they need. The 56-hour cap will place enormous financial stress on friends and family members of auto accident victims, many of whom require around-the-clock care.
“Several suitable and bipartisan auto no-fault reform bills have been introduced this session specifically to fix the unfair fee schedule that will go into effect on July 1,” Rogers said. “We have patiently waited, hoping the legislative process would allow for a hearing on the bills and an up-or-down vote. To date, no committee hearings have occurred. This deadline is one week away, and the looming loss of health care coverage has become excruciatingly real for thousands of Michiganders.”