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Groups pay medical debts for nearly 10,000 in Michigan

December 21, 2018
In this undated photo Melissa Boals, a registered nurse at Munson Medical Center and member of the Michigan Nurses Association Board of Directors, announces that MNA has partnered with RIP Medical Debt to abolish nearly $9 million in medical debt for 9,737 individuals and families in 40 northern Michigan counties. (Alexa Zoellner/Traverse City Record-Eagle via AP)

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — Thousands of people in Michigan are getting a special gift this season: Their medical bills are being forgiven.

The Michigan Nurses Association has partnered with a New York-based nonprofit to wipe clear the medical debts of 9,737 individuals and families in 40 northern Michigan counties.

The Traverse City Record-Eagle reported Friday the nurses’ union donated $12,500 to RIP Medical Debt, which combined it with other funding to cancel nearly $9 million worth of bills.

RIP acquires packages of overdue charges for a fraction of their value and forgives them. People chosen for the assistance are financially insolvent, have medical debts greater than 5 percent of their income or earn less than twice the federal poverty level.

Recipients will be notified by mail.

The nurses’ association announced its participation Thursday during a Traverse City candlelight vigil.

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