On Monday, August 25, members of Mercy Health Saint Mary’s leadership team and some board members met with state legislators on our campus to share information and to better understand the priorities of our legislature, especially in regard to healthcare. Representative Rob VerHeulen (R), Senator Arlan Meekhof (R) and Senator Dave Hildenbrand (R) were our guests, along with CHE Trinity Health vice president of State Advocacy and Marc Corriveau, director of State Advocacy, also from CHE Trinity Health.
During a lunch and a panel discussion hosted by Mercy Health Saint Mary’s President Bill Manns, board members asked the legislators about their priorities, and hospital leadership voiced their opinions about certain bills that would affect health care delivery, such as the Senate Bill 2. Proposed by Sen. Mark Jansen (R) on January 16, 2013, this bill seeks to revise nursing licensure regulations to provide a wider “scope of practice” for “advanced practice registered nurses,” potentially allowing these health care professionals to provide some services that current law only permits physicians to perform, subject to numerous restrictions and specific requirements. Liz Murphy, Drs. Rollie Mambourg, Dave Blair, and Dave Baumgartner all spoke in support of the bill.
After discussing some of the health care issues, including the no-fault insurance law, the legislators admitted that their top priority was the state of roads in Michigan. “That’s the number one concern we hear from people,” the legislators said. However, they listened with interest as our board members and leaders raised questions about funding, the influence of west Michigan on the legislature, CON legislation, and their stand on other issues. It was an informative and productive meeting, and at the end Bill Manns reminded the legislators that we are here to be resources for them as they study healthcare issues.
To find out more about these three local legislators, visit their websites at: