READ MORE: The Minnesota Department of Health and Human Services said it will pay $3.5 million for a pilot program aimed at reducing the number of people who use the emergency room for blood tests or other health care services.
The money will be used to improve access to specialty care and expand the distribution of the state’s emergency medical services system.
The state said the pilot program will test new technology to help people with chronic illnesses, such as diabetes, improve their health and reduce their medical costs.
The state also hopes to expand the number and quality of medical tests.
The emergency department will continue to serve as a primary care center for people with severe or chronic health conditions and will remain open for as long as the state allows, according to the state.
The money will help the department meet its goal of reducing emergency room visits for people who have diabetes by 40 percent by the end of 2021, the department said in a news release.
The announcement came as the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that state law requires the Department of Human Services to pay for the expansion of the emergency department’s network.