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WiAHC Government Affairs Report

January 21, 2022 10:28 AM | WiAHC Office

WiAHC Government Affairs Report | By Hoven Consulting – WiAHC’s Lobbying Firm

Assembly and Senate Committees Hold Hearing on Home Health Rules Update Bill

During the week of January 10, the Assembly Aging & Long-Term Care Committee and the Senate Labor and Regulatory Reform Committee held hearings on Assembly Bill 729 and Senate Bill 700, respectively.  This legislation, which was introduced by Rep. Donna Rozar (R-Marshfield) and Sen. Joan Ballweg (R-Markesan) at the request of WiAHC, brings Wisconsin’s regulations in line with federal regulations by eliminating home health care professional advisory bodies but maintaining governing bodies.  WiAHC state lobbyist Tim Hoven testified at both hearings on behalf of WiAHC and received a positive reception from members of both committees. 

Current state administrative rules require each home health agency to establish a professional advisory body, which is required to review and submit recommendations to the governing body regarding various operational matters each year.  However, in 2017, federal regulations eliminated professional advisory committees and instead created an ongoing quality assessment and performance improvement (QAPI) program.

A home health agency’s governing body is ultimately responsible for ensuring that the QAPI program is operated properly. An additional professional advisory body is no longer needed in state administrative rules now that the federal government has eliminated professional advisory committees and required home health agencies to implement QAPI programs, which prioritizes quality of care and patient safety.  CLICK HERE to read the one-page issue summary that WiAHC provided to legislators.

Politicians on the Move

  • On January 10, State Representative Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh) stepped down as Assembly Minority Leader.  He was first elected to the Assembly in 2006 and was elected as Assembly Minority Leader in 2017.  On January 10, State Representative Greta Neubauer (D-Racine) assumed the role of Assembly Minority Leader.  Rep. Kalan Haywood (D-Milwaukee) was elected to serve as the next Assistant Minority Leader and will take over from State Rep. Dianne Hesselbein (D-Middleton), who will run for the seat of State Senator Jon Erpenbach (D-West Point), who is retiring this year.
  • State Representative Beth Meyers (D-Bayfield) recently announced that she will not run for re-election in 2022.  She was first elected in 2014.  She is a member of the Assembly Democratic leadership team as the Minority Caucus Secretary and is also a member of the Aging and Long-Term Care Committee.  On January 10, new Assembly Minority Leader Greta Neubauer appointed Rep. Meyers to a seat on the Joint Finance Committee for the rest of the 2021-2022 legislative session.
  • State Representative Jim Steineke (R-Kaukauna), the current Assembly Majority Leader, recently announced he will not seek re-election in 2022. Steinke was first elected in 2010, and quickly rose through the ranks of the Assembly GOP leadership. He has served as Majority Leader since 2015.
  • State Senator Kathy Bernier (R-Chippewa Falls) announced on January 7 that she will not run for re-election this year.  She was elected to the Senate in 2018 and previously served in the Assembly from 2011-2018.  She currently chairs the Senate Committee on Elections, Election Process Reform and Ethics and serves on the Joint Finance Committee.
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