Wisconsin got the federal government’s second-biggest reward for enrolling kids who were eligible for tax funded Medicaid, and were not getting it. That was a major goal of Badger Care Plus which added 85,000 eligible youngsters in the last fiscal year. Because of that, the federal government gave state health officials a $23 million bonus Monday.
It was the second highest among 15 states that shared $206 million in bonuses from the national Children’s Health Insurance program. Jon Peacock of the Wisconsin Council on Children and Families said a major stigma was removed when Badger Care Plus was fashioned to serve all Wisconsin children. He also said a new online renewal option helped the Badger State get the award.
Peacock says the bonus will help reduce a $300 million deficit in the state’s Medicaid budget for the next two years. Alabama got the biggest bonus, with $55 million dollars.
Governor-elect Scott Walker and legislative Republicans have talked about scaling back public health programs, and make sure that only the state’s most vulnerable families receive them. Walker’s office says he’s still being briefed on the state’s Medicaid programs.