Update: Gov. Rick Snyder on Thursday will continue a series of informational meetings on the urgent need for the state Senate to act on the proposed Healthy Michigan plan. The plan would expand health care coverage for nearly half-a-million Michigan residents while encouraging healthier lifestyles that reduce health care costs.

Called “A Conversation with the Governor,” the meetings are being conducted with various audiences across the state. Thursday the governor will be at Genesys Health System in Grand Blanc.

 

Governor Rick Snyder will launch a series of informational meetings Tuesday to discuss the proposed Healthy Michigan plan.

The sessions, called "A Conversation with the Governor," will be conducted with various audiences across the state. The first meeting will be in Grand Rapids today with Spectrum Health System employees and health care stakeholders.

In a statement, Snyder said "the Healthy Michigan plan is vital to the health of our families and economic success of our state. Unfortunately, Michigan now faces a sense of urgency to approve the plan in light of the Senate's failure to vote before taking a summer vacation.. I look forward to sharing the information about the plan with health care providers, employers and all Michiganders so that we can work together to move it forward. Healthy Michigan is a good step for our state. It will help build healthier families and a stronger Michigan."

The governor's office says the initiative will reduce skyrocketing hospital costs resulting from uncompensated health care. Under the plan, nearly half-million working but uninsured Michiganders would receive medical coverage.

In addition to lowering costs, the Healthy Michigan plan includes incentives to encourage healthy lifestyles that will hopefully reduce the need for emergency care. The state is projected to save $206 million in the 2014 fiscal year by providing Healthy Michigan plan benefits to those now receiving services paid for by general fund dollars.

The legislation, House Bill 4714, has been approved by the Michigan House with bipartisan support.