Sep 8, 2003
The State of Michigan will stop paying for dental care for adults on Medicaid. Governor Granholm says the cuts are necessary to reduce the state's budget deficit.
The dental care cuts affect 600,000 of the poorest, most vulnerable people. This includes people in nursing homes, the majority of whom are working people or retirees on Medicaid because they've exhausted all of their savings.
Their teeth will become infected because they won't receive preventive care. This is known to shorten people's lives. Many of these people will lose their teeth.
The state says they still will be eligible for treatment. Yes – when they are in severe pain with swelling and infection! And the treatment? The state will pay to have their teeth removed. The state, of course, won't pay for replacements.
The state will also require Medicaid recipients with children to pay co-pays for their medical care. In other words, they will put off getting care for their children until the illnesses are really serious. These children will carry health problems with them for the rest of their lives.
Claiming the state has a budget deficit, Granholm is giving out more in new tax breaks to big business alone this year than the entire budget deficit. In order to give money to its wealthy and powerful friends Granholm commits the most vulnerable people in the state to pain, disease, and shortened lives!