03.26.21

American Rescue Plan Expands Access to Quality Health Care and Lowers Costs for Wisconsin

Baldwin Renews Call for Republicans in the State Legislature to Accept Federal Investment in BadgerCare to Cover More People and Save Taxpayers Money

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin is highlighting the significant provisions in the American Rescue Plan that will expand access to high quality, affordable health care for Wisconsinites.

“People in Wisconsin must have quality, affordable health care coverage during and after this public health crisis. The American Rescue Plan Act expands access to affordable coverage, lowers health care costs, and offers Wisconsin a federal investment in our BadgerCare program so we can save taxpayers money,” said Senator Baldwin. 

The American Rescue Plan Act subsidizes 100% of premiums for COBRA continuation coverage to help people who experienced job loss maintain their health coverage. It also includes legislation Senator Baldwin introduced to ensure access to health coverage by lowering or eliminating health insurance premiums for millions of Americans who buy insurance through the ACA marketplaces through increased tax credits, reducing premiums by potentially thousands of dollars each year. 

“Many people throughout Wisconsin have lost their job and employer sponsored health insurance because of this pandemic. With the American Rescue Plan Act, help is here because we cover premiums for COBRA continuation coverage to help people who lost their job and need health care coverage,” said Senator Baldwin. “For people who buy insurance through the ACA marketplace, the American Rescue Plan includes a provision I pushed for that expands premium tax credits for low-and middle-income Wisconsinites. This will lower or eliminate health insurance premiums through increased tax credits for Wisconsinites.”

Eleven years ago this week, the Affordable Care Act became the law of the land and offered states a federal investment to expand Medicaid. Today, Wisconsin is one of only 12 states that have refused the offer because former Governor Scott Walker and Republicans controlling the State Legislature have refused to accept federal funding to fully expand Medicaid in Wisconsin. Last week, the non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau found if Wisconsin had accepted the federal money starting in 2014, it would have brought in an additional $1.6 billion through the current two-year budget.

Senator Baldwin and Governor Tony Evers support accepting the federal investment in the BadgerCare program and the American Rescue Plan provides robust financial incentives for Wisconsin to do so.   

“This obstruction from Wisconsin Republicans has cost our state. It’s time to do the right thing and take this federal investment in our BadgerCare program so we can expand health care coverage to more people who need it, and save taxpayers money,” said Senator Baldwin.