Medicaid redetermination again in effect after pandemic break

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — More than 3 million people in Michigan must renew Medicaid plan before next spring to keep their health coverage.

The reapplication process is generally annual, but had been paused during the pandemic. It kicked back in this summer and runs through May 2024. Essentially, Medicaid, MIChild or Healthy Michigan recipients must demonstrate they still qualify.

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Regional Health Collaboratives improving access to behavioral health services

An evolution of Community Health Innovation Regions (CHIRs) established in 2015 as part of Michigan’s State Innovation Model, Regional Health Collaboratives are a model for improving a region’s wellbeing and unnecessary medical costs through collaboration and systems change.

Michigan’s six Collaboratives include Greater Flint Health Coalition in Genesee County, Jackson Collaborative Network in Jackson County, Health Net of West Michigan in Kent County, MI Community Care (MiCC) in Livingston and Washtenaw counties, Access Health, Inc. in Muskegon County, and Southeastern Michigan Health Association, which operates in seven southeastern Michigan counties and metro Detroit.

One of the Collaboratives’ shared goals has been to improve access to behavioral health services. Read more

The WGVU Morning Show Children’s Dental Health Month

We discuss Children’s Dental Health Month with guests from My Community Dental Centers and Health Net of West Michigan.

Online survey connects Kent County families to child development resources

KENT COUNTY, MI – Family Futures, a nonprofit that works to support new parents, is partnering with 18 Kent County organizations to provide an online survey to help connect more families to parenting resources.

The Kent County Parenting Support Site is a website that connects families to home-visiting resources, allowing them to further their children’s health, development and school readiness, the news release said.

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Online survey connects Kent County parents to resources

The Kent County Parenting Support Site ( is a website that connects families to local home visiting programs that allow them to nurture their children’s health, development, and school readiness. Parents answer a few short questions on the website and are matched with an organization that best fits their needs based on their responses.

The Kent County Parenting Support Site was created in 2017 with the mission to easily connect families to home visiting resources. Since the creation of the website, more than 1,000 families in Kent County have been connected to organizations.

“Finding the community resource that is best for your family can be overwhelming,” said Candace Cowling, Executive Director of Family Futures. “These organizations are coming together to help solve that problem.”

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2022 40 Under 40 award recipient: Doug Booth

Doug Booth, 34


Health Net of West Michigan

Doug Booth likes to be involved. He likes to get others involved, too.

“My biggest influence is the child that I once was. I grew up a closeted gay boy in West Michigan. Everything I do, I think back to then and ask if I would feel safe with me now? I was scared and unsure of what life had in store for me. I think back to then because I know there are still kids in our area that may feel the same way now that I did then. That’s unacceptable for me, so I will always try and help and stay visible for the LGBTQ kids in our communities.”

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40 Under 40: This class leads the charge for change

Change is never linear. But often there are recognizable guideposts along the way to indicate change is coming.

In its simplest form, change often is marked by a loosely defined path of outcry, debate, negotiation, experimentation and finally action.

Looking back on the past dozen or so classes of 40 Under 40 Business Leaders and comparing and contrasting membership makeup in those classes, an argument can be made that Grand Rapids has reached the milestone where real change can be made.

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By Leaps & Bounds: Barriers to Navigating Early Childhood

Our guest is Jenn Harrod, Client Services Manager, Health Net of West Michigan
Being a parent or caregiver is no easy task! This is especially true for expectant parents, seasoned parents, and caregivers of young children as they work to advocate for the needs of their household and for their children.

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Statement on Overturn of Roe v. Wade 6-28-22

The recent action of the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade is counter to our organizational vision of health equity, a community where all have a fair and just opportunity to be as healthy as possible. Health Net of West Michigan is committed to advocating for scientifically based public health principles, fulfilling our mission of connecting our community to health-related resources. We support our neighbors in advocating for justice in social and political determinants that create optimal birth conditions. Addressing the root causes of racism and poverty is the only solution that will disrupt the dangerous trend of negative maternal health outcomes for our region and state.

The Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision infringes on client self-determination to achieve optimal health, a core component of our care model. Restriction of healthcare access and choice disproportionately impacts low-income individuals, people of color, and those living in under-resourced communities across the United States. This compounds and adds another barrier for individuals across the country to pursue healthier lives and a sense of well-being, further complicating what should be a personal and private decision that birthing people should be able to make in conjunction with their health care provider.

Many states are actively pursuing more restrictive laws around reproductive health services or have trigger laws already in place. A Michigan court of claims judge granted a preliminary injunction in a suit filed to block enforcement of a 1931 anti-abortion state law, placing a temporary hold on the implementation of this regressive law in our state. While details continue to develop surrounding the longstanding impact on reproductive care in our nation, each of us can take personal action as we see fit.

Some actions to consider are:

  • Research the reproductive freedom petition at
  • Vote in the upcoming elections (primary & general). Ensure you are registered to vote by visiting:
  • Volunteer or donate to organizations that support equitable access to healthcare and community resources to support families.
  • Learn about opportunities to take part in organized public demonstrations

Health Net of West Michigan will continue to advocate for our community and to imagine a world where true health equity can exist. This includes the right for individuals to have access to information, resources, and services to choose the care they want to receive to make the best decision for their own lives.

Statement for Patrick Lyoya 4/12/2022

Patrick Lyoya, a 26-year-old father, friend, son, and member of our community was shot and killed by a Grand Rapids Police Department officer on Monday, April 4, 2022.

We urge Mayor Rosalyn Bliss, City Manager Mark Washington, Grand Rapids Police Department Chief Eric Winstrom, and Kent County Prosecutor Chris Becker, as well as others in systems of power to critically examine and address the system of policing that is rooted in white supremacy to prevent the significant and needless loss of Black and Brown lives. Additionally, we urge the release of the original, unedited video footage in its entirety, as well as all related information surrounding the incident. This request upholds the wishes of the Lyoya family regarding the events leading up to the murder of their son and brother. Patrick’s family deserves justice!

While we await the release of dashcam and body cam footage we stand steadfast in the belief that Black Lives Matter and change must come to prevent tragic and often avoidable outcomes such as those that occurred on April 4, 2022. To the Lyoya family, our immigrant and refugee community, we grieve alongside you and echo pleas for Justice for Patrick (Lyoya).