Press Release: Gov. Evers Provides Update on the Investment of Nearly $2 Billion in Wisconsin Communities in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic

Office of Governor Tony Evers
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 20, 2020
Gov. Evers Provides Update on the Investment of Nearly $2 Billion in Wisconsin Communities in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic 
Administration invests $131 million to strengthen healthcare system in Wisconsin
MADISON —​ Gov. Tony Evers today provided an updated accounting of federal funds invested in public health, emergency response efforts, and economic stabilization in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Evers Administration also recently announced $131 million in targeted allocations for efforts aimed at addressing healthcare worker shortages and helping create capacity in Wisconsin hospitals and skilled nursing facilities. Funds were allocated by the Evers Administration from the state’s Coronavirus Relief Fund, which was made available to Wisconsin through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Targeted allocations addressing worker shortages and hospital/skill nursing facility capacity include: 
  • $40 million for hospital and skilled nursing facility staffing 
  • $30 million for Post-Acute Admissions Incentive Payments for Skilled Nursing Facilities 
  • $1 million for a Certified Nursing Assistant Marketing Campaign 
  • $60 million for Long-Term Care Direct Payment Program Supplement 

To date, federal funds have been invested in emergency response, public health measures, and economic support initiatives for Wisconsin residents, businesses, and communities. As of Nov. 6, 2020, the state has expended $621 million and obligated an additional $484 million, An additional $872 million in funds have been committed for distribution by the end of December. Roughly $22 million remains reserved to ensure the state continues to have the flexibility to respond to emerging needs. Today's update also reflects additional investments that have been made out of the surge operating reserve, including for a program to provide admissions incentives for skilled nursing facilities and efforts to recruit and retain healthcare staff. Allocations will continue to be updated to reflect reestimates based on actual cost information. 

Additional information on these efforts is available on Wisconsin’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Investment dashboard websiteThe website provides transparent and regularly updated information regarding how and where Wisconsin is investing federal funding, including significant funding from the federal CARES Act.

The Administration is continuing to make regular revisions to allocations to reflect actual costs to ensure Wisconsin can utilize funds before the federal deadline. Federal CRF dollars must be expended by Dec. 30, 2020, leaving Wisconsin and other states facing a significant cliff in available funding despite the ongoing pandemic.

As of yesterday, Wisconsin has 338,472 positive COVID-19 cases, 15,336 hospitalizations, and 2,876 deaths due to COVID-19. Current trends continuing to show an increase in cases in Wisconsin, requiring continued investment in these detection and mitigation efforts. 

A chart of CARES funding allocations is available for review here