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Granholm highlights plan to expand access to Health Insurance
Proclaims May 1-7 “Cover the Uninsured” Week in Michigan


LANSING – Governor Jennifer M. Granholm last week highlighted her Michigan FIRST Health Care Plan at a press conference in Detroit to kick-off “Cover the Uninsured Week” in Michigan that is scheduled May 1-7 and is a nationwide effort to raise awareness of the plight of uninsured citizens across the nation. 
“Healthy citizens are a critical component of a healthy economy and an overall high quality of life,” said Granholm.  “Michigan citizens deserve access to quality, affordable health care.”

Jennifer M. Granholm

Granholm announced the Michigan FIRST Health Care Plan in her 2006 State of the State Address.  Through a partnership between the health care and business community, Michigan FIRST will expand insurance coverage to more that half a million people who do not have it today. Citizens, from those who run their own business and sacrifice paying for insurance to those who simply don’t have the means to buy it, will now have access to affordable coverage.
Michigan is currently seeking federal approval of a waiver to use Medicaid funds to cover uninsured citizens.  There are approximately 1.2 million uninsured individuals in Michigan.  Lowering the number of uninsured people in Michigan will lower the cost of insurance for everyone.  It is estimated that families with insurance pay an extra $730 per year to cover the cost of the uninsured. 
The Governor highlighted several other state initiatives designed to improve access and affordability of health care for Michigan citizens, including approval of a plan to double the number of county health plans in Michigan, and the 22 county expansion of the state’s healthy kids dental program.  
Granholm stated that the success of the state’s first statewide prescription discount plan, the MiRx card, which has more than 35,000 citizens enrolled.
“I continue to work every day to help protect health care programs for our most vulnerable citizens and to help create new alternatives to ensure that we provide assistance to those without health care coverage,” said Granholm.  “It’s the right thing to do for our economy and the right thing to do for our families.” 







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