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Governor signs COVID-19 relief bill

The passage of this legislation clears the State of Wisconsin to be able to access the 6.2% increase in the federal medical assistance (Medicaid) percentage (FMAP), which equates to approximately $50 million per month or $150 million per quarter enhanced funding. However, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services announced in stakeholder calls this week that "the increased FMAP funding will be needed to support the increased number of individuals in the state who, with the loss of employment or reduced employment hours, will now qualify for health coverage through Medicaid and BadgerCare." This means the department is not expected to allocate the enhanced FMAP funding to specific Medicaid programs, such as Family Care.

Among other things, the bill:

- Prohibits the Wisconsin Department of Health Services from requiring an instructional program for nurse aides in Wisconsin to exceed the federally required minimum total training hours or minimum hours of supervised practical training.

- Provides new civil liability protections for health care providers, health professionals and health services.

- Eliminates the one-week waiting period for unemployment benefits

The bill does not include any new general purpose revenue spending, however it does appropriate $75 million for the Joint Finance Committee to respond to potential future requests for funding from Gov. Tony Evers.



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