Medical Coverage Following Vehicle Crashes Reduced In Michigan
Some people in Michigan are sounding an alarm. They’re concerned about whether people who suffer severe injuries from vehicle collisions will be properly cared for. That includes a growing number of state lawmakers, including Kalamazoo Democrat Julie Rogers.
It all goes back to major changes in Michigan’s no-fault insurance program. T one time it created the highest premiums charged to drivers in any state in America. New changes are taking effect this year which are reducing premiums for drivers. But the changes also mean reduced coverage and even availability for medical care following injuries from a crash.
Businesses that provide rehabilitation services are saying as of July 1, they won’t be able to provide some services. That’s due to a big cut in reimbursement from insurance companies which is forcing some people to rely on Medicare.
The changes in vehicle insurance go back to two years ago when the legislature approved a plan allowing us as drivers to choose the level of personal injury protection we wanted, affecting our premiums. Prior to that, unlimited lifetime coverage was a requirement. The new changes reduce the reimbursements for medical care providers. It's a real “Catch-22”.
Everyone seems to enjoy paying lower insurance premiums. But then what happens if you are critically injured in a crash and need long-term care? Times are changing.
Kalamazoo State Representative Julie Rogers is among a growing number of state lawmakers who believe the money-saving changes to no-fault insurance went too far. In an opinion article for Bridge Magazine, Rogers writes., “As of July 1, the new fee schedule will go into effect that will only reimburse rehabilitation agency providers 55 percent of the Medicare fee schedule. This will likely result in many rehabilitation providers, group homes and others going out of business in Michigan. To add insult to these injuries, insurance corporations continue taking in record profits. These earnings continued in 2020 during a time where so many were struggling to adjust to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.”