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Obamacare Replacements Continue to Shortchange Wisconsin

Wisconsin estimated to come up $37 billion short compared to expansion states

The Senate Republicans’ newest proposal to replace Obamacare, released July 13, again falls far short of ensuring access to affordable care, stabilize the insurance markets, and protect Wisconsin’s Medicaid program, according to the Wisconsin Hospital Association (WHA).

The most recent version of the U.S. Senate’s Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) keeps the same tax credit structure as the previous draft, which was first unveiled June 21. Under the Senate plan, tax credits would increase for older Americans and would be eliminated for those making 350-400 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL). The plan also phases out the cost sharing subsidies that have helped reduce out-of-pocket costs for many at the lowest income levels.

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Court Decision Risks Patient Access to Health Care
Loss of non-economic damage cap will exacerbate future physician shortages

The Wisconsin Hospital Association (WHA) is concerned it will become more difficult for patients to find care in their communities, particularly in rural and inner city areas, if the July 5 Wisconsin Court of Appeals ruling on the constitutionality of Wisconsin’s cap on non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases is upheld.

“We disagree with the Court of Appeals conclusion that there is no evidence or rationale supporting the Legislature’s policy decision to protect access to health care in Wisconsin by enacting Wisconsin’s cap on non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases,” said WHA President/CEO Eric Borgerding. “Upsetting the Legislature’s informed policy decision by invalidating Wisconsin’s cap on noneconomic damages will negatively impact Wisconsin communities’ efforts to attract physicians to provide accessible, quality health care to their residents.”

 (Read more...)

Wisconsin Workers Comp Premiums Plummet

Wisconsin businesses see largest drop in workers comp rates since 1995

Wisconsin employers will see the second largest decrease in premium rates for worker’s compensation in 22 years. This week, the Wisconsin Commissioner of Insurance approved an overall 8.46 percent rate decrease for worker’s compensation premiums for business this year following a 3.19 percent decline last year. According to the Department of Workforce Development (DWD) this decrease represents a savings of nearly $170 million for employers.

“This is the second consecutive year worker’s compensation rates have declined in Wisconsin, reaffirming our commitment that Wisconsin is open for business,” said Gov. Scott Walker. In a press release, DWD Secretary Ray Allen credited workplace safety efforts, as well as efforts to bring injured workers back to work as soon as possible. (Read more...)

Wisconsin Hospitals are Committed to Quality and Transparency

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WHA Gold Members:
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Hall Render Merritt Hawkins  

Fast Facts
By the Numbers:

General med-surg hospitals:  129
Critical access hospitals:58
LT acute care hospitals: 6
Psychiatric hospitals: 10
Inpatient days (2014): 2,600,153
Outpatient days (2014): 18,211,447

 Wisconsin hospitals employ more than 100,000 people and generate nearly
$30 billion in economic activity.

NewsClips

 

This Week's Priorities

High Risk Pools: High risk pools could help stabilize the individual insurance market if they're done right. (Read more)

Medicaid: WHA submitted comments to CMS on WI's draft waiver amendment to the state's Medicaid childless adult demonstration project.(Read more)

Workforce: It is likely the enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact will go into effect before the end of the year.(Read more)

 

WHA Job Bulletin

The WHA Job Bulletin provides member hospitals a venue where they can post vacancies on-line as a no cost benefit of membership.

 

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