Evers allocating $100 million in federal funding for long-term care facilities, emergency medical services

CARES Act funding to offset some COVID-19 expenses

Gov. Tony Evers
Gov. Tony Evers

Last updated on May 22nd, 2020 at 11:35 pm

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers today announced he is directing $100 million in federal relief funding to providers of long-term care, emergency medical services and home and community-based services. 

The CARES Act funding will support providers’ expenses related to COVID-19 and the interruption of typical services, such as overtime pay, changes to sanitation procedures and disruptions to care.

“We recognize the significant burden the COVID-19 response has placed on these providers,” Evers said. “We also recognize the integral role they play in ensuring the health and safety of some of our most vulnerable Wisconsinites and we want to support their efforts during this pandemic.”

The funding will be administered in two phases, including an initial release to support immediate needs and a second targeted release for additional needs of individual providers.

Prior to the pandemic, the state’s long-term care industry has faced headwinds, including low government reimbursement rates, a severe workforce shortage and a swelling patient population. During the COVID-19 crisis, facilities have taken on additional expenses to supply employees with personal protective equipment and retain workers.

“These providers need this additional funding to maintain patient care of the highest quality,” said Wisconsin Department of Health Services secretary-designee Andrea Palm. “The services they provide save lives on a daily basis, and that is especially true during this pandemic.”

As of Wednesday, the state had initiated a total of 165 public health investigations for COVID-19 at long-term care facilities. Among those, 71 facilities have a single confirmed case and 107 facilities have less than 5 confirmed cases. 

There have been 64 public health investigations at Wisconsin nursing homes, 53 of which are still active. 

At long-term care facilities, a single case of COVID-19 prompts a public health investigation.

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Lauren Anderson
Lauren Anderson covers health care, nonprofits, education and insurance for BizTimes. Lauren previously reported on education for the Waukesha Freeman. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she studied journalism, history and African studies. In her free time, Lauren enjoys spending time with family and friends and seeing live music wherever she can.