WHA: President/CEO Eric Borgerding statement on Governor Evers’ budget

Contact: Stephanie Marquis, Vice President of Communications Communications@wha.org | 608.575.9702 (C)

“Medicaid is the health care safety net for our most impoverished citizens and Wisconsin’s hospitals and health systems are proud to provide essential, and sometimes the only, access to care for this population. However, Medicaid reimburses hospitals and physicians far below the costs they incur caring for these patients. These unpaid costs make it difficult to expand access to care while adding over one billion dollars annually to the cost of care for Wisconsin families and businesses.

“That is why we are pleased Governor Evers has included reimbursement increases for hospitals in his state budget bill, and is targeting areas of greatest need, such as urban and rural safety net hospitals and improving access to behavioral health services, dental care for special needs patients and primary care. Improving Medicaid reimbursement and expanding access to care are bipartisan issues that WHA has worked successfully with both parties to address, and we look forward to doing so again in the coming months.

“We are also pleased to see the Governor continue funding for the Wisconsin Healthcare Stability Plan. WHA has been a strong advocate of increasing coverage for the uninsured and stabilizing and reducing premiums for the insured. Wisconsin has effectively leveraged state and federal policy to achieve both aims. Wisconsin’s 41% reduction in the uninsured rate since 2013 and 4.2% reduction in individual health insurance premiums in 2019 are examples of how working together we can improve both coverage and affordability. Over the coming months, WHA is committed to engaging Governor Evers and the Legislature to build on what Wisconsin has accomplished and work toward bipartisan solutions to further stabilize the market and expand coverage.

“This is a very large state budget bill and it will take time to understand its impacts and implications for Wisconsin health care. WHA’s second-to-none policy team will be analyzing Governor Evers’ budget over the next several days and we may comment further as the details become clearer.”

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