House Dems Take on Health Care Costs, Cap Primary Care Co-Pays at $5

Plan increases access to health care while keeping more money in Michigan pocketbooks
Wednesday, May 23, 2018

LANSING — House Democrats introduced a plan to reduce the cost of visiting a primary care doctor, the latest in their efforts to make health care more affordable as part of the Building Opportunity for All agenda. House Bill 6051, introduced by state Rep. Abdullah Hammoud (D-Dearborn), would help keep more money in the pockets of working families by pushing back on Michigan health insurers to limit primary care provider co-pays to a maximum of $5 per visit. Making primary care visits more affordable would help increase access to the most basic level of care for Michigan families, while allowing them to keep more of their hard-earned money.

“Having the best doctors, hospitals and health care staff in the world means nothing if you cannot afford to enter the building.” Rep. Hammoud said. “Yet rising out-of-pocket costs push families to delay the care they need when they need it. Pushing back against these outrageous high out-of-pocket costs today will ensure that families have greater access to the care they need tomorrow.”

Under the House Democratic plan, health insurance companies would be prevented from tacking on additional charges to visit a primary care provider. Not only would Michigan families be able to live healthier and more productive lives, this also leads to a reduction in overall health care spending. The bill also proposes a five-year sunset to study the overall impact of the reform.

“House Democrats know that no one should be priced out of the care they need and deserve,” said House Democratic Leader Sam Singh (D-East Lansing). “That’s why we’ve been consistent in our fight to lower costs, tackling issue areas like prescription drug prices and these co-pays. While Republicans attempt to take health care away from millions of Michiganders through bills like SB 897, Democrats are working instead to take on costs and make sure working families have the health and economic freedom they deserve to live a life that works for them.”

Earlier this term, House Democrats introduced legislation to take on skyrocketing prescription drug prices and hold manufacturers accountable for price gouging. Those bills have not received a hearing in the Republican committee since their introduction earlier this year.