Minimum Markup Repeal Legislation Circulating

Wisconsin’s “Unfair Sales Act” (Wis. Stat. §100.30) prohibits the sale of merchandise at less than cost and requires a specified minimum markup above the wholesale cost for alcohol, tobacco, and motor vehicle fuel. Several legislators are currently circulating bills that would amend or repeal the Unfair Sales Act to lower costs for consumers on prescription […]

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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a bill placing a state-level prohibition on pre-existing conditions exclusions, if the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is repealed or is otherwise unenforceable.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 […]

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Evers Issues Medicaid Expansion, Pre-existing Conditions EOs

In some of the first executive actions of his term, Gov. Evers this week signed two executive orders directing state agencies to implement plans for expanding Medicaid and prohibiting pre-existing conditions exclusions in health insurance. Executive Order 3 directs the Department of Health Services (DHS) to develop a plan for expanding Medicaid eligibility. EO 3 […]

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DHS Medicaid Projections Improve

On Dec. 28, the Department of Health Services (DHS) sent the Joint Finance Committee an update on the state’s Medicaid budget that projects Medicaid benefits costs will be below budgeted levels by $212.7 million GPR by the end of 2017-19. In September, DHS had projected a $149 million difference between budgeted and projected expenditure levels […]

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Opioid Task Force Releases Final Report

Gov. Scott Walker’s Task Force on Opioid Abuse has released its final report. The report details the Commission on Substance Abuse Treatment Delivery’s analysis of how the hub-and-spoke model of treatment delivery might work in Wisconsin. The report analyzed the hub-and-spoke model in other states (California, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington) and laid out the […]

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Federal District Court Strikes Down ACA Mandate

A federal district court in Texas has ruled that the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) individual mandate is unconstitutional. The court further found that, because the individual mandate is “essential” to the ACA, the remaining provisions of the law are also invalid. Congress zeroed out the tax penalty appropriation, yet left in place the ACA’s individual […]

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CMS Approves BadgerCare Reform Demonstration Waiver

The federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has approved Wisconsin’s Section 1115 BadgerCare Reform demonstration waiver. The waiver primarily makes changes to the BadgerCare childless adult (CLA) population in the state’s Medicaid program. The changes include: Work requirements. CLAs are required to participate in 80 hours per month of community engagement, including employment, […]

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Unpacking DHS’s Budget Request

On Sept. 17, state agencies submitted their 2019-21 biennial budget requests that, in total, included roughly $2.5 billion dollars in additional funding (according to Wispolitics). Accounting for the bulk of the increase in state general purpose revenue (GPR) are the usual cost drivers – education, health care and corrections. Coming in a distant second to […]

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Gov. Scott Walker Declares PA Week Oct. 6-12

Gov. Scott Walker has declared Oct. 6-12, 2018, as Physician Assistant (PA) Week in Wisconsin. The governor’s proclamation recognizes PAs as valuable assets to medicine, especially in underserved rural areas of the state. PA Week also recognizes PAs for contributing “to the well-being and quality of life for all patients of Wisconsin.” Over 2,700 PAs […]

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Direct Primary Care Committee Will Not Recommend Legislation, Kapenga/Sanfelippo To Reintroduce Bill

The Study Committee on Direct Primary Care (DPC) met for the final time on Sept. 18 to make their final recommendations from their work this summer. The committee concluded without recommending any legislation but agreed that DPC is a positive part of the health care system and that the Group Insurance Board (GIB) should explore […]

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