Rep. Schroeder supports plan to combat state psych worker shortages

Categories: Schroeder News

Plan allows retired employees to return to work and keep pensions

State Rep. Andrea Schroeder today voted in support of a House plan to combat the ongoing shortage of behavioral health professionals in Michigan.

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

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.

“A lack of psychiatric professionals means a lack of available care for Michigan’s vulnerable residents,” said Schroeder, of Independence Township. “This plan ensures people receive the care they need in a timely fashion from experienced and qualified individuals.”

The state already allows retired psychiatrists to continue to keep their pensions during reemployment with the state. Schroeder 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.