HORTONVILLE (NBC 26) — Governor Tony Evers, along with the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) announced $32 million in EMS Flex Grants, which will be awarded to 442 EMS providers making sure that nearly every county across Wisconsin has the proper support they need.
The announcement delivers on a promise made by Evers during his 2022 State of the State address in which he announced a $12 million investment into EMS Flex Grants.
Evers will be investing an additional $20 million in the EMS Flex Grand Program based on substantial needs in communities, with 442 EMS providers requesting more than $63 million in support.
“For years, our local partners have been asked to do more with less, and so many communities have had to cut back on services like public safety across our state. Our EMS providers are often the first on the scene, providing critical care when we need them the most—especially over these past few years—and I know these folks are stretched thin,” said Gov. Evers. “This funding is going to provide much-needed support to our EMS providers across the state to help ensure they have the tools and resources they need to meet the needs in their communities and continue their life-saving work.”
EMS Flex Grants are designed to provide support to EMS providers across the state, especially in rural communities for whatever they need most to continue serving their communities. This includes staffing support, training for first responders, and purchasing new supplies, medical equipment, and vehicles.
Initial investments included a one-time $8 million supplemental funding for the Funding Assistance Program (FAP) which was awarded in August. Additional investments come from the new one-time EMS Flex Grant Program, to help fill the gap for those providers who were otherwise not eligible for FAP funding. All funds come from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).
“These grants will provide additional support to more EMS providers, including prioritizing our rural communities to ensure they have adequate emergency response options,” said DHS Secretary-designee Timberlake. “Getting these funds out quickly into the community is a top priority so that people can get emergency medical care when they need it most.”
Additionally, the governor’s State of the State announcement included $7.4 million to implement an additional 16% rate increase for emergency transportation providers through the Wisconsin Medicaid program.
Since February, Evers has directed more than $69 million to support EMS providers in communities across Wisconsin.
To view the announcement in its entirety, click here.