Medicaid Expansion Bill Circulating

This week, Sen. Jon Erpenbach (D-Middleton) and Rep. Daniel Riemer (D-Milwaukee) circulated legislation (LRB 2962) to expand the eligibility level for the state Medicaid program to up to 133 percent of the federal poverty line. Under the Affordable Care Act, states which expand Medicaid receive enhanced federal funding. The bill requires the Department of Health […]

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Gov. Evers Signs 2019-21 Budget Bill

On July 3, 2019, Gov. Tony Evers signed into law the 2019-21 state budget as 2019 Act 9. The governor used his partial-veto authority to change 78 provisions adopted by the Legislature. The final budget includes bipartisan priorities such as a middle class tax cut, water quality initiatives, expansions to dental care access, other health care initiatives, and increased education […]

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Gov. Evers Announces Health Care Coverage Partnership

Gov. Tony Evers, the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance and the Department of Health Services announced last week a Health Care Coverage Partnership aimed at boosting health care insurance enrollment, through both the individual market and Medicaid. The Partnership will: Educate consumers by promoting HealthCare.gov and using insurance agents and navigators.Engage with stakeholders, including […]

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Joint Finance Committee Passes Medicaid Budget

The Wisconsin Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee (JFC) passed an omnibus motion on the Department of Health Services (DHS) budget, specifically addressing Medicaid, public health, FoodShare, behavioral health, and quality assurance. Overall, the motion spends: $187 million (in all funds) less than the governor’s proposal in 2019-20.$1.6 billion (in all funds) more in 2019-20 compared to the base […]

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JFC Holds Agency Briefing on 2019-21 DHS Budget

The Joint Finance Committee (JFC) has kicked off the budget process in the legislature by holding agency briefings this week. Inviting fewer agencies than usual, JFC heard testimony from six agencies over two days, including the Department of Health Services (DHS). DHS Secretary Andrea Palm’s testimony said Gov. Evers’s budget proposal is “anchored in” Medicaid […]

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Positive Medicaid Budget Projected by End of Current Biennium

On March 29, the Department of Health Services (DHS) submitted an updated projection for the state’s Medicaid budget to the Joint Finance Committee.  DHS estimates the Medicaid budget will end the current 2017-19 biennium with a surplus of $233.9 million GPR. The biennium ends on June 30, 2019. This is an increase of $21.1 million […]

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Wisconsin Withdraws From ACA Lawsuit

Attorney General Josh Kaul has withdrawn Wisconsin from a multistate lawsuit seeking to declare the Affordable Care Act (ACA) unconstitutional. Wisconsin and Texas had originally led the litigation under former Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel. The lawsuit argues that the ACA’s individual mandate is unconstitutional, and, because the individual mandate is “essential” to the ACA, […]

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Health Care Issues Moving in the Legislature

Although the legislature is not planning to meet in March and may not meet in April, too, for floor action, several notable health care related bills are making their way through committees. Below is an overview of major health care issues this session and their current status in the legislative process. Dental Therapists – Introduced […]

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Evers Releases $43 Million Dental Plan

Gov. Evers released a dental access initiative this week that would include $43 million in funding in 2019-21 for various dental programs. The initiative would: Increase the rate for loan repayments to the dentists who serve in rural areas from $50,000 to $100,000. Allocate $39 million for increased reimbursement rates to dental providers if they […]

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Floor Report: Assembly Passes Pre-existing Conditions Legislation

In their first floor session of the year on Jan. 22, the Assembly passed a bill placing a state-level prohibition on pre-existing conditions exclusions, if the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is repealed or is otherwise unenforceable. The bill, amended by Assembly Substitute Amendment 1, would exempt short-term, grandfathered, and transitional plans from these prohibitions. At the […]

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