Issue Papers/Resources

Reauthorize the Medicaid Disporportionate Share Program - Issue Paper - Click Here

The Medicaid Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) program exists to help hospitals that serve a larger number of Medicaid patients by offsetting losses resulting from below-cost Medicaid reimbursement.  Wisconsin reauthorized a Medicaid DSH program in 2013, but only for two years.  If the program does not move forward, it will result in a $75 million cut to Wisconsin hospital Medicaid reimbursement – making the Hidden Health Care Tax even worse.

While the state Department of Health Services projected that 93% of individuals previously in Medicaid would enroll in coverage with the federal health insurance exchange, we now know that this actual "take up" rate was 54%, meaning nearly half of those previously on Medicaid did not go onto Exchange coverage and could likely result in additional hospital uncompensated care. Medicaid DSH was reauthorized in 2013 to address this potential problem, which still exists today.

Encourage your lawmaker to reauthorize and strengthen the Medicaid DSH program today. Use the issue paper above to help your advocacy efforts and make sure that your legislator sees this information.

Strengthen Primary Care and Outpatient Reimbursement - Issue Paper - Click Here

While more Wisconsin citizens have access to coverage through Medicaid or the federal insurance exchange, access to primary care practitioners continues to remain a hurdle for some Wisconsin citizens. Wisconsin's Medicaid program can begin to address this inequity and incentivize primary care within the state Medicaid program by increasing reimbursement for certain primary care provider codes. This proposal would accomplish two separate goals, cut the Hidden Health Care Tax on Wisconsin families and businesses while also incentivizing access to care in the right setting, at the right time.

Wisconsin hospitals and health systems are ahead of the curve, providing more health care in less expensive outpatient settings and getting people back to their families faster. Unfortunately, the Medicaid program reimburses outpatient services far less than inpatient services as a percentage of overall cost. In fact, the Wisconsin Medicaid program sets outpatient hospital reimbursement at only 9% of charges – in the single digits. The Wisconsin Medicaid program can begin to cut the Hidden Health Care Tax quickly by increasing reimbursement for hospital outpatient services.

Encourage your local legislator to cut the Hidden Health Care Tax by increasing Medicaid reimbursement for primary care and outpatient hospital services.