The following statement can be attributed to Brian Peters, CEO of the Michigan Health & Hospital Association.
The fiscal year 2024 state budget approved by the Michigan Legislature renews a longstanding commitment lawmakers have made to the health and wellness of Michigan’s hospitals, health systems and communities.
We are extremely pleased to see the inclusion of new funding to support trauma centers and inpatient psychiatric services that will provide a net benefit of $92 million. Trauma centers at hospitals provide lifesaving treatment to people with the most severe injuries, ready at a moment’s notice for mass casualty events and catastrophic accidents with a vital network of EMS services. This added funding makes Michigan a national leader in recognizing the importance of access to trauma services and makes sure trauma centers can continue to be equipped with the resources needed to staff these services 24/7, year-round.
Michigan is also in the middle of a behavioral health crisis where the demand of patients needing inpatient care continues to increase. We commend the Legislature for recognizing this need and increasing rates to inpatient psychiatric facilities based on patient acuity to help hospitals afford the staffing, security and facilities necessary to accept patients with more severe illness.
In addition, the budget continues to support long-standing programs crucial to access to healthcare services throughout Michigan. These include funding for rural and critical access hospitals, obstetrical services, graduate medical education, the Healthy Michigan Plan and Michigan’s Medicaid population.
We look forward to a signed budget that provides hospitals with the needed support to continue to provide high-quality care to every patient.
Behavioral health emergency department (ED) boarding data the MHA has been collecting on a weekly basis from acute care hospitals across Michigan since March 2023 is now available on the Health Data webpage of the MHA website.
The aggregate data shows the total number of patients waiting to receive a behavioral health evaluation and the total number of patients boarding in an ED awaiting an inpatient psychiatric bed. The webpage is updated every Thursday with new weekly data.
As of May 8, 265 behavioral health patients were awaiting a bed across 76 hospitals, demonstrating the crisis your organizations are dealing with daily.
This information is being used by the advocacy and policy departments of the MHA to bring awareness to the issue and pursue legislation to ease the burden on member hospitals and health systems while getting behavioral health patients the care they need. Hospitals are encouraged
to continue participating in the weekly data collection by close of business each Monday.
Members with questions on survey participation and results should contact Lauren LaPine.
The release of the Michigan Senate and House Appropriations Health and Human Services Subcommittee budgets April 25 include broad investments in healthcare and specific investments advocated for by the MHA. The state budget is at a pivotal point in the process, as individual legislative chambers are releasing budget recommendations following the executive budget recommendation Feb. 8 by Gov. Whitmer. After the adoption of the legislative subcommittee budgets, the state House and Senate are expected to pass their individual chamber appropriations recommendations before preparing to negotiate a final conference budget. The MHA anticipates a negotiated budget passing in June.
The MHA advocated for the state to make a significant investment in maximizing Michigan’s federal Medicaid match. Each segment of the proposal presented a distinct opportunity to leverage federal funding in support of access to care and alleviating financial stresses on hospitals. Included in the proposal were increases in reimbursement for labor and delivery; inpatient psychiatric services; outpatient rates; and the creation of new funding to support Level I and II trauma centers. Overall, the MHA crafted a budget request that has the potential to produce significant funding investments in services that directly contribute to increased access to care for the state’s residents.
The Senate subcommittee responsible for the Department of Health and Human Services appropriations released their subcommittee budget with inclusion of approximately $40 million in funding to support Medicaid reimbursement increases in labor and delivery, inpatient psychiatric rates and outpatient services; and an additional $30 million in funding to support Level I and II trauma centers. Further, over $16 million in funding was allocated to MHA member hospitals to support opportunities for increasing access to behavioral health, rural access and capital improvements.
The House subcommittee included $60 million to support Level I and II trauma centers and $33 million to support an inpatient psychiatric reimbursement increase. In addition, the House included over $33 million to support MHA member hospital requests benefiting behavioral health, women’s health, pediatric access and capital improvements.
Both chambers also included significant funding to support the Gov. Whitmer’s Healthy Moms, Health Babies initiative. The legislature will now be tasked with combining their individual proposals into a cohesive final state budget. The MHA will continue advocating for increased Medicaid reimbursement as the budgets are consolidated, while supporting members in achieving success with individual priorities.
Questions on the budget can be directed to Adam Carlson at the MHA.