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he financial burden of medical and even dental care need not be so burdensome for hundreds of thousands of previously uninsured Michiganders. Thanks to the Healthy Michigan Plan, individuals or families with an income below 133 percent of the federal poverty level (meaning an individual making less than $16,000 or a family of four making less than $33,000) may be eligible for health insurance covering a wide range of preventive, dental and emergency services as well as prescription medications, lab and X-ray services and rehabilitative services.
To be eligible for participation in the Healthy Michigan Plan, applicants must be Michigan residents between the ages of 19 and 64, meet the income guidelines previously mentioned, and not already be enrolled in Medicare or another Medicaid program. Applicants will need to provide proof of legal status, which can include their Social Security Number, passport or immigration document status number. They will also need to provide proof of residency, which can include a driver's license or a utility bill. Lastly, they'll need to show proof of income for all family members, which can include W-2 forms or pay stubs.
Qualifying applicants can enroll online (Michigan.gov/MIBridges), by phone (855-789-5610), in person at local Department Human Services offices or by calling DMC at 1-888-362-2500 or visit any DMC hospital.From the date the application is submitted, applicants will learn of their approval to participate in the program within 45 days.
Once approved, applicants will receive a letter from the state with a list of insurance providers from which they can select. Once they have chosen an insurance carrier, applicants will receive an insurance card in the mail. They then have 60 days to schedule an annual physical. Program participants will also need to complete a Healthy Michigan Plan Health Risk Assessment form.
"The Healthy Michigan Plan has been the saving grace for hundreds of thousands of people who have been deprived of adequate health care for decades," says Katrina McCree, Director of Government & Community Affairs at DMC Sinai-Grace Hospital. "As a certified application counselor, I have witnessed firsthand many emotional outbursts after one's application has been processed and approved, and the person is finally able to see a doctor for the first time in their life."
The Healthy Michigan Plan involves some minimal cost-sharing by the patient, though exact amounts may vary depending on the specific insurance carrier selected. Total cost-sharing (which includes co-pays) cannot exceed five percent of a patient or family's household income. A breakdown of typical co-pays is detailed on the Healthy Michigan Plan website.