For Immediate Release: Tuesday, June 23 Contact: Leigh Fifelski
(517) 999.3646

Report: Health Costs Crippling in Michigan

Study Shows Urgency of Real Reform As Michiganders Head to Washington To Make Their Voices Heard at Major Event


The skyrocketing cost of insurance is increasingly putting health care out of reach of working people in Michigan, according to a new report released today by Health Care for America Now of Michigan

Health insurance premiums for Michigan working families have soared, increasing 78 percent between 2000 and 2007. In dollars, that means that family health coverage in Michigan leapt from $6,817 to $12,151 the report said.

The wages of Michigan’s workers have not kept pace. Between 2000 and 2007 the median earnings of Michigan workers increased 5 percent, while health insurance premiums in the state rose 17 times faster.

“These startling numbers show insurers milking working Michiganders for every last dime and then some. Clearly, if we want real relief and access to care for Michigan families, we can’t leave health care reform up to the insurance companies,” said
John Freeman, director of Michigan Health Care for American Now! “While Michiganders are struggling to hold on to their health care and their jobs, insurers are busy spending our money lobbying in Washington against real competition in the health care marketplace that would keep down costs and give us a real choice of insurers and plans.”

As Michigan’s unemployment reached 14.1{ef69e4e9e447e52a60027e369ac6a3d796f53805e5a70de1d67ce22dac9553da} in May, over 1,096,821 people are now uninsured and exposed to catastrophic costs of accidents and illness. More and more people are finding themselves and their families without health care coverage.

“As GM and Chrysler continue to close plants in Michigan, we need to think about a real solution to turn our economy and our families around,” said Erin Knott, assistant director, Michigan Citizen Action. “That is why we must call on Congress to do what is right for Michiganders and U.S. citizens and offer a public choice option.”

Health Care for America Now members from Michigan will be among the thousands of health care activists headed for Washington, DC this week for a major event supporting real reform that provides quality, affordable health care for all. The activists will meet with members of their congressional delegation and take part in an historic rally in Congress’ backyard.


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