Governor Tony Evers and the state’s Department of Health Services (DHS) announced June 11 that $40 million has been allocated for Wisconsin hospitals to help offset some of the costs related to combating the COVID-19 pandemic. The money will be allocated based on Medicaid inpatient and outpatient base payments made to Wisconsin hospitals in the previous year. The state indicates that payments are expected to be made to eligible hospitals in mid-July.
WHA has persistently advocated for state and federal relief for the state’s hospitals and health systems, which have suffered unprecedented revenue losses due to preparations made in response to the federal government’s direction to stop non-emergency services and increase hospital bed and equipment capacity in anticipation of a COVID-19 surge.
“Our hospitals have been doing more with less throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, caring for vulnerable Wisconsinites and keeping our communities healthy and safe,” Gov. Evers said in a statement announcing the funding. “This support is critically needed as we continue to battle this virus and ensure high-quality care for Wisconsinites.”
“The work of Wisconsin’s hospitals is life-saving work, whether during a pandemic or not,” DHS Secretary-designee Andrea Palm said in the statement. “But due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we know hospitals are stretched thin. This funding will help alleviate the financial strain felt by these hospitals and make it possible for them to continue their essential work.”
“Today’s announcement from Governor Evers is very welcome news as hospitals continue recovering from the financial impacts of COVID-19,” WHA President and CEO Eric Borgerding said. “We appreciate this assistance and his recognition of the ongoing challenges facing hospitals and health systems across the state. We look forward to continuing our collaboration with Governor Evers, his administration and state and federal policymakers to address the pandemic while ensuring our hospitals and health systems can resume addressing the broader health care needs of Wisconsin patients and families.”