Improve the health of the people of Wisconsin by supporting and strengthening physicians' ability to practice high-quality patient care in a changing environment.

Enrollment plans for new health insurance marketplace coalescing

The Wisconsin Health Insurance Outreach & Enrollment Summit brought together more than 250 health care leaders to engage stakeholders across sectors and announce a unified strategy for Wisconsin’s planned changes to Medicaid and BadgerCare and implementation of the Affordable Care Act. The University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute (UWPHI) organized Tuesday’s event with the goal of getting Wisconsin residents covered through appropriate health insurance venues.

Tim Bartholow, MD, the Wisconsin Medical Society’s chief medical officer, participated in a panel of health care professionals, payers and advocates. “The implementation of the Affordable Care Act over the next 75 days before open enrollment begins, and the days and months afterward, are sure to be bumpy,” Dr. Bartholow said. “I am confident that we have the talent and horsepower in the room to make sure that enrollment for those who are transitioning off of Medicaid onto the exchange, for the newly eligible Medicaid childless adults and the uninsured who are now eligible for tax credits on the exchange goes as smoothly as possible for this vulnerable population.”

Wisconsin Medicaid Director Brett Davis announced that the state will name numerous regional networks that will start coordinating enrollment outreach by mid-September. The networks will include Medicaid regional administrative staff, Medicaid income maintenance staff and representatives from health care consortium groups. Davis said Gov. Scott Walker’s plan is to enroll at least 250,000 uninsured people when federal health law takes effect. Open enrollment in the health insurance marketplace is schedule to begin October 1 and last until March 3, 2014.

Training for navigators and certified application counselors will begin August 15, said Dan Schwartzer, Wisconsin’s deputy commissioner of insurance. State law requires navigators and application counselors to receive training and satisfactorily complete an exam to help people enroll online or in person. It’s expected that many community health centers, hospital systems and other groups will dedicate financial adviser staff time to take the training and exam so they can assist patients with enrollment in the new health insurance marketplace.

Throughout August and September, the Society will provide members with information about how the changes will affect physician practices; watch Medigram for updates. Many of the program materials from stakeholders and government officials who presented at the Summit are valuable resources and are available on the UWPHI website.

Back to July 18, 2013 Medigram