MI-Child program merits support



    Kudos to the YMCA of Greater Grand Rapids for taking on the promotion of MI-Child, Michigan’s low cost ($10 per month) health insurance program for children.

    The federally funded MI-Child program takes on new meaning in the context of national health care reform. Covering the uninsured and providing access to health care are key goals in health care reform. What better way to help address the issue for a huge segment of the uninsured population than to take advantage of an existent program?

    It is possible for the majority of our community’s children to have access to health care services due to the availability of coverage under MI-Child and under Medicaid, for those with even less income. There is no reason for our children not to have coverage.

    In 1998, when MI-Child was first rolled out, the Alliance for Health led a community coalition to assure that the new program would be promoted. The Kent County Health Department was asked to take the lead role in outreach to families with children. Since then, MI-Child has not received the attention it deserves due to changing priorities and shortages of funding. With the YMCA stepping up, more families will become aware of the program and be able to sign up their children.

    Although “children are our future” might seem somewhat of a cliché, it’s important that we afford our children every opportunity to be healthy. Please visit the YMCA of Greater Grand Rapids and sign your children up today. Also, please let others know about this opportunity. Our children are worth it!

    Lodewyk P. (Lody) Zwarensteyn
    President, Alliance for Health
    Grand Rapids

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