Medicaid benefits used to be available mostly to low-income children, pregnant women, and disabled adults in Michigan. But that changed in 2013 when Michigan voted to use federal funds from the Affordable Care Act to extend those benefits to more people. Gov. Rick Snyder was a major force behind the legislation, saying it would mean lower healthcare costs and more federal dollars for Michigan. Healthy Michigan, the state’s expanded Medicaid program, has enrolled nearly 600,000 people to date. But the future of the program depends on the Department of Health and Human Services getting a waiver from the federal government.

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As enrollment in the state’s Healthy Michigan program continues, many of the state’s Community Mental Health officials have been sounding the alarm that they do not have sufficient funds to treat everyone who comes to them for help. In fact, there have already been scattered reports of people being cut off from state mental health services due to the shift in funding caused by the Medicaid expansion.

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Two notable developments related to health insurance take place in just a few days. Monday is the last day for Americans to sign up for coverage on without incurring a penalty on their federal taxes next year. is the federal website functioning as an insurance exchange for 36 states, including Michigan. The next day, April 1st, is the first day close to a half-million low-income Michigan residents can enroll for coverage offered by the ‘Healthy Michigan’ plan.

Another fight related to Medicaid expansion could be coming soon in the state Legislature.

Most states that have decided to expand their Medicaid programs under the federal Affordable Care Act started signing people up Tuesday.

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Many Michigan businesses have voiced concern and disapproval of the federal Affordable Care Act.  Twice before on Current State, we’ve explored the issue with one of the state’s key advocates for small business.

Rob Fowler is CEO of the Small Business Association of Michigan, based in Lansing.  He returns with his thoughts on the health insurance exchanges that will soon to be unveiled. Fowler isn't sure that businesses will benefit from them.

Jake Neher MPRN

Michigan is now the 25th state to expand Medicaid under the federal Affordable Care Act.

Governor Rick Snyder says extending Medicaid to more working poor people will save the state a lot of money – and that begs the question of what to do with the budget windfall.

File photo/WKAR

Governor Rick Snyder says he looks forward to signing a Medicaid expansion bill when he returns in a couple of weeks from a trade mission to Asia. In the meantime, the state will continue to negotiate with the federal government on the program.

Governor Rick Snyder says he intends to sign a bill that will extend Medicaid benefits to hundreds of thousands of Michiganders. The bill cleared the state Legislature Tuesday.

MPRN’s Rick Pluta Updates Senate Medicaid Decision

Aug 28, 2013
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A controversial measure that would expand Medicaid health coverage to more than 400-thousand Michigan citizens passed the state Senate last night.  

If a vote on Medicaid expansion comes down to a tie in the state Senate, Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley says he’s willing to cast the tie-breaking vote to pass it.


Beginning in 2014, much of the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) takes effect. The landmark law aims to ensure that U.S. citizens have access to quality and affordable health insurance.  


The Affordable Care Act, often known as Obamacare, is well underway across the USA.

In Michigan, debate continues over expanding Medicaid coverage to thousands more people.

Courtesy of Rep. Sam Singh

This summer’s been busier than usual at the State Capitol, with ongoing discussions happening on hot button issues including Medicaid expansion, Common Core education standards, road funding and more.

Rep. Sam Singh (D-East Lansing) joins the Current State to offer his perspective on those issues and more. He represents the House's 67th district.

A state Senate panel is expected to vote Wednesday on a plan to expand Medicaid in Michigan.

A plan to expand Medicaid in Michigan will get its first hearing in the state Senate Tuesday.

A state Senate work group has finished its own plan to expand Medicaid to hundreds of thousands of Michiganders under the federal health care law.

Some members of the Michigan legislature are having a busier summer than usual. While most legislators are on a summer break, party leaders and work groups continue debating major proposals not resolved by the June passage of the 2014 state budget.  Those include Common Core education standards, Medicaid expansion and others.   Michigan Public Radio state capitol bureau chief Rick Pluta talks with Current State's  Mark Bashore for an update on legislators' current progress on such issues. 

There could be a vote in the state Senate in late August on a bill to extend Medicaid health coverage to thousands of un-insured working poor people.

The event generated some clamor, speech-making, and drew the dean of Congress.

A state Senate panel is expected to start discussing a bill next week to expand Medicaid in Michigan.

Governor Rick Snyder has said he doesn’t expect a vote next week to expand Medicaid in Michigan.

Governor Rick Snyder is calling on state Senate Republicans to return to Lansing. That’s after the Senate adjourned for its summer recess without voting on a Medicaid expansion under the new federal healthcare law.

Michigan Public Radio’s Rick Pluta tells us how the episode left hard feelings, and dimming prospects for extending health coverage to many thousands of low-income working households

Governor Rick Snyder says he’s concerned the deadlock over expanding Medicaid to cover more un-insured working people could be repeated on other tough questions.

State lawmakers are moving forward with a plan to expand Medicaid in Michigan after months of debate.

State lawmakers have dropped a proposal to limit able-bodied adults to four years on Medicaid.

Governor Rick Snyder says he’s going to re-double efforts to get the Legislature to agree to expand Michigan’s Medicaid program.

Governor Rick Snyder says he wants lawmakers to reach an agreement in the coming weeks on a plan to overhaul and expand Medicaid.

Governor Rick Snyder’s administration says it’s “very skeptical” the federal government will let Michigan put a time limit on Medicaid.