LANSING, Mich., March 14, 2023 — State Rep. Julie M. Rogers (D-Kalamazoo) introduced House Bill 4224 last Thursday to repeal the workforce engagement requirements language currently included in the Healthy Michigan Plan.

Adopted in 2018, these requirements are no longer enforceable since the federal government rescinded the waiver for Michigan to impose such provisions in April 2021. Under Rogers’ proposed bill, the outdated and unenforceable statute language about workforce engagement requirements — which also undermine the state’s efforts to drive down health care costs by expanding access to primary care — would be removed.

“Medicaid is health care, and everyone should have access to affordable and quality health care,” Rogers said. “These burdensome requirements merely posed a bureaucratic hurdle in front of otherwise eligible individuals who could end up receiving expensive care in the emergency room rather than receiving preventive medical care.”

As of March 13, there are now more than 1 million people enrolled in the Healthy Michigan Plan. Access to health care increases primary care usage, reduces dependence on emergency rooms and strengthens our economy. Now that these burdensome provisions are no longer valid and enforceable, it is time to remove this outdated language.

Additionally, beginning April 1, as the federal pandemic emergency orders are ending, Medicaid recipients will need to submit documentation for redetermination of eligibility for the first time in three years. Timing for submitting information will be determined based on the recipient’s anniversary date for when they were originally approved for benefits.

“With the additional Medicaid unwinding fast approaching, timing is of the essence to remove whatever barriers we can to ease access to these needed health care services,” Rogers stated.

HB 4224 has been scheduled for a hearing before the House Health Policy Committee on Thursday, March 16, at 10:30 a.m.