SD Network

Category: LTC Redesign

Recently, the  Department of Health Services (DHS) announced  the expansion of Family Care services in six northern Wisconsin counties including Oneida, Vilas, Florence, Forest, Taylor and Adams. This  will provide many people access to long-term care  services for the first time.  DHS plans to expand Family Care ad IRIS statewide in the first quarter of 2018.

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2016 Election and Wisconsin Long-Term Care

By SD Network, 2016-10-06

Before heading to the polls on November 8, advocates for people with disabilities and older adults in Wisconsin are reminding candidates about one of the most important issues they will take a vote on if elected: long-term care.

Election Day is less than 40 days away and stakeholders are asking State Assembly and Senate candidates where they stand on issues important to the 60,000 people with disabilities and older adults who use long-term care to remain healthy and independent.

The Wisconsin Long-Term Care Coalition has released three documents to help people talk to and ask question of their local candidates about long-term care.  We encourage you to look at these documents and have conversations with your local Assembly and Senate candidates regarding long-term care in Wisconsin.

LTCCCandidateQuestionsRelease.pdf LTC Question Release
LTCCCandidateQuestionsRelease.pdf, 177KB

OverviewofWisconsinLTC.pdf Overview
OverviewofWisconsinLTC.pdf, 788KB

Questions for candidates.pdf Candidate Questions
Questions for candidates.pdf, 385KB

Today, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services announced plans to expand Family Care and IRIS programs statewide by beginning of 2018. This will eliminate the wait list for hundreds of people seeking long-term care services.  This means the final seven counties in Wisconsin will finally have access to services.

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On July 1st, Family Care and IRIS expanded to Rock County.  This will put an  end to a waiting  list  for over 400 people who have been waiting for long-term care service.  The Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) of Rock County has been counseling people, helping them decide which program best meets their needs.   

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On Thursday June 9th, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services contacted the co-chairs of Joint Finance to withdraw its Concept Plan on Family Care/IRIS 2.0 DHS Secretary Kitty Rhoades cited participant input as a major reason for withdrawing the plan from consideration.

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Since the Department of Health Services (DHS) submitted the Family Care/IRIS 2.0 Concept Paper to the Committee on Joint Finance on March 31st, committee members and others have asked why the Department chose to have three separate administrative zones if Family Care/IRIS 2.0 is implemented statewide.

DHS published a new web page with additional information about this topic, Family Care/IRIS 2.0: "Why Three?"" target="_blank" rel="noreferrer noopener">Click to view Family Care/IRIS 2.0: “Why Three?”

On April 11th, 2016, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services has released a summary of the changes made to the Family Care/IRIS 2.0 Concept Paper based on feedback received from public hearings, testimony, and stakeholder meetings regarding the draft of the Concept Paper.

The following information was released by the Wisconsin Dept. of Human Services (DHS) on March 31, 2016:

Click here to view the Family Care/IRIS 2.0 Concept Paper

As required by 2015 Act 55, earlier this afternoon the Department submitted the Family Care/IRIS 2.0 Concept Paper to the Joint Committee on Finance. Consistent with the current program, Family Care/IRIS 2.0 will continue to serve adults with physical disabilities, adults with developmental disabilities, and frail elders who meet financial and functional eligibility requirements.

To create this Concept Paper, the Department held 10 public hearing, met with councils, boards, and committees that advise DHS on its long-term care programs; and held additional meetings with a variety of stakeholders to collect input. We received testimony in person and in writing from more than 750 people.

Thank you to everyone who submitted feedback. We value your input and look forward to working with you as we work toward implementing Family Care/IRIS 2.0.

The Family Care/IRIS 2.0 plan outlined in the Concept Paper reflects the Department’s approach that remains centered on the fundamental principles of self-determination, empowerment, member-centeredness, quality, consumer choice, and fiscal stability.


Next Steps for Family Care/IRIS 2.0

Now that the Concept Paper has been submitted to Joint Committee on Finance, it will need to be reviewed and approved by the Legislature. After the Legislature approves the Concept Paper, the Department will begin developing the formal waiver and/or state plan authority documents to submit to federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). DHS will release these documents for public review and will conduct another formal public comment period prior to submission to CMS. 

Do you have questions about the proposed long-term care program (Family Care/IRIS 2.0) being proposed by the Wisconsin Dept. of Health Services (DHS)? Check out their Frequently Asked Questions page.

WI DHS implements new National Core Indicators

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) is using a new system to get information on the quality of life of individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities participating in Wisconsin’s Long Term Care System (Family Care, Family Care Partnership, PACE, IRIS, and Legacy Waivers).

The new system is called the National Core Indicators (NCI). NCI uses written surveys to families/guardians, and face to face interviews with individual with disabilities to ask questions about the quality of the person’s life in areas such as: employment, community involvement, living situation, and community involvement.

DHS is beginning to implement NCI now.

You may be contacted to participate in a survey or interview. It’s your choice whether you participate or not, but we strongly encourage you to participate.

This is a very important opportunity to have your voice be heard and let DHS know how participating in LTC services is impacting the quality of your life.

If you have questions or would like more information, contact Michelle Osness, Wisconsin’s National Core Indicators Coordinator at .

See a sample letter here:

***We thank the Wisconsin Board for People with Developmental Disabilities for providing us with this information.

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