This Wall Street Journal story highlights the struggle many people in Michigan face as auto jobs disappear.
The share of Michigan residents under 65 using public insurance such as Medicaid rose to 22% last year, from 11% a decade earlier, WSJ reports.
“These cutbacks, in turn, are devastating the health-care sector. Now the state’s largest employer, health-care providers have swung from profit to loss. Hopes are fading that Michigan’s hospitals and clinics can offset the car industry’s decline: Even as waves of former auto workers are retraining as nurses, dental hygienists and X-ray technicians, the state’s hospitals are freezing expansion plans and laying off workers. Unpaid bills at the state’s hospitals hit $2 billion in 2007, twice the level in 2001, and continue to grow, according to the Michigan Health & Hospital Association.”
It’s a pretty grim picture.