- Associated Press - Thursday, March 24, 2016

LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Legislation going to Gov. Rick Snyder’s desk aims to better inform family members who care for patients at home after they’re discharged from the hospital.

The bill would require hospitals to give each patient the opportunity to designate a lay caregiver. Hospitals would have to attempt to consult with designated caregivers and issue discharge plans describing patients’ after-care assistance needs.

AARP Michigan says family caregivers are the first line of defense against older Americans being forced into nursing homes.

The bill was approved 70-38 in the House and 27-9 in the Senate Thursday. Many Democrats opposed the measure because plaintiffs’ attorneys and others worry it could inadvertently strip family members’ ability to be paid for their services under Michigan’s auto insurance law.

The bill’s supporters say those concerns are unfounded.

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