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DHS requests $452 million increase for Medicaid in 2017-'19 biennium

Monday, September 19, 2016  
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September 16, Wisconsin Health News 

The Department of Health Services is requesting an increase of $452 million in general purpose revenue for Medicaid in its 2017-'19 biennial budget request to the Department of Administration.

Secretary Linda Seemeyer wrote in the request sent Thursday to DOA that the department's budget request that the increase in Medicaid funding is based on projected enrollment, costs per enrollee and other factors. 

"While still a significant amount of funding, this increase is small by historical standards," Seemeyer wrote, noting that the last three biennial budgets increased state spending in the program by $650 million, $685 million and $1.6 billion respectively.

Seemeyer also noted they expect the program to be below budget in the current biennium, with more than $260 million GPR expected to lapse into the state's general fund at the end of fiscal year 2017. That lapse is separate from the department's request for an increase.

"These slowing Medicaid growth rates reflect the success of Governor Walker's entitlement reforms, efforts to improve health outcomes through better care coordination and initiatives to identify and eliminate waste, fraud and abuse," she wrote. "They also result from improved oversight of managed care contracts and reforms enacted by the governor and Legislature."