LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — Today State Representative Ann Bollin voted to expand early treatment capacity for COVID-19 patients, assist health care worker shortages and to keep school in-person.
The $1.077 billion supplemental budget plan is funded by federal COVID relief dollars allocated to the state.
“COVID cases continue to strain our short-staffed hospitals and create challenges for schools and families,” Bollin said. “We’re offering support by investing in early treatments like monoclonal antibodies to help people recover faster and testing to keep kids in schools.”
Goals of the plan include: early treatment in COVID cases, aiding the health care worker shortage and keeping students in school while protecting residents.
Treatments such as monoclonal antibodies often aid the severity of COVID-19 cases and help to speed up the recovery process of patients.
Research suggest, the drugs can reduce the risk of hospitalization or death for COVID-19 positive patients by up to 85%.
The House plan will increase delivery with providing eight additional sites across Michigan. Investment in buying and expanding delivery of the drugs and other medicines will be up to $134 million.
Priority will be given to high-risk individuals, and treatments are required to be free of charge.
Thousands of health care positions are ready and available across the state, and those still working are being strained. The House plan utilized $300 million for health care employee recruitment and retention and additional support for nursing homes and long-term care facilities.
Approximately $668 million will be provided for COVID-19 testing, including $150 million for schools to buy COVID-19 testing kits. Another $150 million is set to be allocated to schools at the beginning of 2022. About $100 million would be provided for private employers to test unvaccinated workers. Also, $90 million would continue the state’s vaccination program.