Rep. Kahle supports plan to combat statewide psych worker shortage

Categories: Kahle News

Retired psych employees returning to work will keep pensions

State Rep. Bronna Kahle has voted in support of a House plan to combat the ongoing shortage of psychiatry workers in Michigan.

The issue was brought to the Legislature’s attention last term during the House C.A.R.E.S. Task Force statewide tour, which aimed to find ways to improve Michigan’s mental health system by listening to mental health experts, families of patients and law enforcement officials.

The plan would allow certain retired mental health professionals to come back to work with the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) without forfeiting their pension benefits.

“This is a great plan to encourage experienced professionals to come out of retirement and serve during this time of great need for their expertise,” said Kahle, of Clinton Township. “The people of Lenawee County need access to quality mental health care – that’s why I’m pleased to support this measure.”

The state already allows retired psychiatrists to continue to keep their pensions during reemployment with the state. Kahle contends the state should extend that same opportunity to other mental health care professionals such as physicians, psychologists, nurses, social workers, counselors and therapists to combat serious shortages in such roles.

House Bill 4156 was approved unanimous, bipartisan support and now moves to be considered by the state Senate.