Newsmakers: Department of Health Services Secretary Dennis Smith on Medicaid
In a Newsmakers interview on April 29, Health Services Secretary Dennis Smith talked about ways to fix his $600-million problem — the gap between the projected cost of Medicaid programs over the next two years and the money available to pay for them. Smith said savings are possible by asking the 1.6 million residents on Medicaid to pay more, by shifting from a "volume" to "value" reimbursement program for providers, and by limiting the costly Family Care program. Smith also explained why he and Gov. Scott Walker support turning Medicaid into a block grant program, starting in 2013. One in five Wisconsin residents, and one in three children, now get health care through the $6.7-billion annual Medicaid program.