we had comprehensive universal single payer health insurance. Instead he is vilifying poor and possibly handicapped Wisconsinites who are currently on Badgercare (Medicaid). But really, the state and federal government co-pay for Badgercare, so removing users from the plan would save money…although I don’t think that’s totally the impetus behind this. If saving money was truly in the plan, Gov. Walker would have accepted the Affordable Care Act Medicaid expansion instead of sitting back on his ideology and refusing it…thereby being dogmatically pure in preparation for his presidential campaign. What’s the current number on that? $1 Billion that Wisconsin lost?

But let’s back up a second. If we had a comprehensive universal single payer health insurance plan there would be NO Badgercare…there would be no cost to the State of Wisconsin…and every Wisconsinite would be covered…period.

But here’s the story:

Federal officials signed off Wednesday on Gov. Scott Walker’s plan to require some people to work to receive health insurance through the BadgerCare Plus program, drawing attention to one of the governor’s initiatives less than a week before the election.

The requirement would apply to healthy people who have no dependent children, who are under 50 and who haven’t worked for four years.

The federal agency also approved:

Collecting premiums from some adults without dependent children. The proposal has raised questions on what it will cost the state to collect premiums that could be as low as $4 a month and how it will affect people who don’t have checking accounts or credit cards.
Charging some adults an $8 co-payment for unnecessary visits to hospital emergency departments. That proposal could be difficult to implement given that hospitals will not know if a visit is unnecessary until after a patient has been treated. The Wisconsin Hospital Association has said it is “highly likely” that most of the co-payments won’t be collected and that the change essentially will result in a rate cut for emergency department visits.

The state also won approval to allow its BadgerCare Plus program to cover short-term residential treatment for substance abuse in freestanding behavioral health hospitals. Those hospitals have been barred from billing Medicaid programs for residential treatment.

This is getting wa-a-a-ay more complicated than it needs to be!

BTW: I will give kudos to Gov. Walker for expanding BadgerCare Plus for substance abuse treatment.

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