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DHS Partners with the Pharmacy Society of Wisconsin to Help Assisted Living Facilities Receive Booster Shots of the COVID-19 Vaccine

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) supports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) recommendation that certain populations who have increased risk of exposure to, or transmission of, COVID-19, receive a booster shot of the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at least six months after having received their second Moderna or Pfizer dose, and that individuals age 18 and older, who received the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, receive a booster shot at least two months after their primary dose. Residents over the age of 18 residing in an Assisted Living Facilities (ALF) and staff would be eligible to receive boosters.

Many ALFs have partnered with pharmacies, or other vaccinators, for booster vaccinations; however, some ALFs may need assistance finding a pharmacy that would either vaccinate at the facility or at the pharmacy. DHS has partnered with the Pharmacy Society of Wisconsin (PSW) to help you find a nearby pharmacy to host a vaccination clinic at your ALF.


If you would like assistance partnering with a pharmacy, please contact PSW staff member Erica Martin at Erica will introduce you to a pharmacy that will vaccinate the ALF staff and/or residents at your facility. The ALF and pharmacy will be responsible for determining the amount of vaccine needed and the clinic date. The pharmacy will conduct the scheduled clinics and report the data to the Wisconsin Immunization Registry (WIR).

As a reminder, DHS continues to strongly encourage individuals who are not yet vaccinated to receive their primary series.


If you have questions or would like more information, please contact Erica Martin at

Previous News

Federal grant program related to encouraging home based workforce in getting vaccinated.

The National Minority HealthCare Association has gotten a grant they are using to provide reward funding to individuals in home based care getting vaccines. Reward funding is through HRSA and is limited by the terms of the Grant.

Rewards will be distributed until end of Grant agreement with NMHA, or when all grant funding has been distributed, whichever comes first.

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $11.1million. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government. For more information, please visit


Throughout 2020 and into 2021, like many of you, Family Care and Family Care Partnership Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) have been focused on our response to COVID-19 and ensuring health and safety for all. Last fall, based on guidance from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS), all MCOs resumed limited face-to-face visits with all members.

Beginning May 15, 2021, DHS has directed all Family Care and Family Care Partnership MCOs to resume regular, contract-required in-person visits with all members. In accordance with Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) guidance, MCO staff are essential workers, and as such, are to be permitted to enter facilities if they are not subject to a work exclusion due to an exposure to COVID-19 or are not showing signs or symptoms of COVID-19 after being screened.

  • This means telephonic and/or video visits no longer meet the face-to-face contract requirement. MCOs are again required to see members in person to meet this standard.
  • To shorten the length of visits, care teams may obtain some of the required information telephonically prior to the visit.
  • DHS has an expectation that providers contracted to serve people enrolled in Family Care, Partnership, and PACE will allow care teams to enter facilities to conduct face-to-face meetings.

Inclusa takes an approach to conducting member visits which focuses on assuring health and safety and reducing community spread. The guidance below is provided to Inclusa colleagues and includes expectations prior to completing any in-person member visits. We hope this provides reassurance that Inclusa colleagues are as safe and healthy as possible when they come into your facilities.

Colleague Vaccination and Sharing Vaccination Status. Inclusa does not require, but strongly encourages, colleagues to be vaccinated. Vaccination status is protected health care information (PHI). If asked, many Inclusa colleagues are comfortable sharing their vaccine status with you, but we cannot require them to do so as the colleague has the choice in whether to receive the vaccine.

Precautions for Visits. We take precautions driven by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and DHS guidance when visiting. Prior to scheduling a visit or entering a facility, Inclusa colleagues:

  • Must complete a COVID-19 screening for themselves and those they plan to see that day; if an Inclusa colleague does not pass the COVID screening, they do not complete in-person visits
  • Maintain at least six feet of physical distance between ourselves and others as a standard
  • Must always wear a mask, regardless of vaccination status
  • Perform hand hygiene before and after each visit

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
. Inclusa requires and provides PPE for each Inclusa colleague, as well as supplies for good hand hygiene.

Adjusting for Local Conditions. Inclusa monitors community spread and adjusts priorities based on this monitoring. If there are multiple positive cases (producing an outbreak status) in a facility, Inclusa colleagues will not complete in-person visits during the outbreak except in rare circumstances.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released new visitation guidance that promotes in-person and extended visitation for persons living in long-term care settings. This new information has been incorporated into DHS guidance to provide a balance between maintaining safety and supporting residents, family members, and staff. We encourage you to explore the Safer visits in Wisconsin assisted-living – A Person-Centered Approach section of the DHS COVID-19: Assisted Living page for more information about safer visiting criteria, including “Revised Safer Visitation Guidance in Assisted Living Facilities: Guiding Principles.”  

If you have questions about Inclusa’s in-person visit guidance, please contact Kris Willey at

Thank you,

Your partners at Inclusa – We’re in this together


The coronavirus pandemic has been difficult for everyone yet has adversely affected certain populations more than others. Vaccination is a critical tool for containing the coronavirus and minimizing the adverse impact of COVID-19.

Inclusa recognizes trusted messengers who understand the life experiences of the diverse individuals, families, and communities in Wisconsin are in the best position to promote understanding and acceptance of COVID-19 vaccination among these populations.

Because partnership, innovation, and respect are three of Inclusa’s core values, we are offering a total funding of $25,000 to partner with us to:

  • Educate about COVID-19 and COVID-19 vaccines,
  • Support people to make educated personal decisions about COVID-19 vaccination, and
  • Eliminate barriers to COVID 19 vaccination in underserved communities in Wisconsin.

Funding is available for organizations serving certain target populations in Wisconsin:

  • Hmong communities
  • Latinx communities
  • Black communities
  • Rural, agricultural communities

LEARN MORE HERE: Microsoft Word Document | PDF

PPE Grant for Wisconsin Residential Providers Serving Family Care, Partnership, PACE and IRIS

This project is funded through a supplement to the Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP) Cooperative Agreement (U3REP190586) from the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR).

Grant funds are available to partially offset past, current and/or future costs for personal protective equipment for residents and staff resulting from the pandemic.

The State of Wisconsin Division of Public Health is collaborating with managed care organizations to make grant funds available to certified or licensed residential providers who have a valid contract with one of the following managed care organizations:

  • Community Care
  • iCare
  • Inclusa
  • Lakeland
  • MyChoice Wisconsin

Facilities eligible to apply for grant funds include:

  • Certified Adult Family Homes
  • Licensed Adult Family Homes
  • Community Based Residential Facilities (CBRF)
  • Residential Care Apartment Complexes (RCAC)

The amount of funding available is based on the number of qualified individuals in residence at the time the grant application is submitted. Eligible residents must be enrolled in one of the following programs:

  • Family Care
  • Family Care Partnership
  • PACE
  • IRIS

Online Application Process

The application process may be completed using the website located at:

Application Timeline

  • Application Process Begins – March 8, 2021
  • Application Process Ends – April 2, 2021

Payments will be distributed by managed care organizations. If you have a contract with more than one managed care organization, you will need to select one. Your chosen managed care organization will distribute grant funding which includes all of your qualified residents.

Please direct your questions about the application process to:

Funding paid under this grant will be included on 1099s provided by MCOs to recipients. Please consult your tax professional to determine tax and audit implications.

(Approved by DPH 2/26/21)

Click here for a resource containing screenshots walking through the application website.

The US Small Business Administration is reopening the Paycheck Protection Program

The U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the Treasury Department, announced on January 8, re-opened the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) the week of January 11 for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers.

Initially only community financial institutions were able to make First Draw PPP Loans on Monday, January 11, and Second Draw PPP Loans on Wednesday, January 13. The PPP then opened to all participating lenders. This round of the PPP authorizes up to $284 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses through March 31, 2021, and allows certain existing PPP borrowers to apply for a Second Draw PPP Loan.

For more information, go to

You may be eligible to receive funds through the CARES Act Provider Payment Portal. Apply by June 30!

DHS has been accepting applications for the CARES Act Provider Payment (CAPP) program. The CAPP program aims to offset any lost revenue and increased costs that long-term care service providers and facilities and emergency medical services providers incurred as a result of COVID-19 during the months of March through May 2020.

You can check your organization’s eligibility by navigating through the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on the program homepage (

Below are responses to common questions we have recently received:

Are non-profit organizations and government entities eligible?

  • Yes, non-profit organizations and government entities are eligible.

Can I still receive CAPP funds if I also received a PPP loan?

  • Organizations who have previously received a PPP loan or any other COVID-19 aid are still eligible to apply for and receive relief funds.
    • Providers who received a PPP loan are still eligible to apply for CARES Act Provider Relief Fund payments. The amount you are eligible to receive is calculated by determining your net loss or expenses resulting from COVID-19 and deducting other funds received via the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund payments, government loans, or business continuation payments received to offset COVID-19 lost revenues or expenses. When completing your application, you will be prompted to enter the amount and type of other relief your organization has received.

I haven’t completed my 2019 tax return, can I still submit an application?

  • Application updates have been made to accommodate 2019 tax return filing due date extensions
    • If a final 2019 federal tax return (or 990) is not available, please upload a final 2019 profit and loss statement and final 2018 federal tax return (or 990 for non-profits).
    • If your organization is tax exempt, please submit a copy of your final 2019 Form 990. If unavailable, see above for a 2019 tax return (or 990) alternative.

As a reminder, the DHS CAPP application closes at 11:59PM Central Time on Tuesday, June 30, 2020. You can access the application through the program homepage, where you can also find additional information or help in navigating the application through the FAQs, help documents, and videos to walk you through the application process.


CARES Act Provider Payments Program


News Alert: HHS Announces Relief Fund Distributions for Safety Net Hospitals, Medicaid & CHIP Providers


CARES Act Provider Payments


Guidance on 1-2 Bed Adult Family Homes and Supported Living Apartments Posted to DHS Website

Guidance on 1-2 bed adult family homes and supported living apartments is now posted on the DHS website. The purpose of this guidance is to provide the best information currently available to help providers prevent the spread of COVID-19 and additional guidance for responding to a suspected, probable, or confirmed case of COVID-19.


Inclusa received communication from the Department of Health Services (DHS) directed to “All Regulated Health Care Providers” regarding facilities requesting that residents sign-over their economic impact payment checks. We have no reports of this happening in WI, but wanted to be sure you are aware of the communication. Outlined below, is the message sent by DHS:

Attn: All Regulated Health Care Providers
Subject: Economic Impact Payment Checks to Residents

A number of troubling reports have emerged around the nation of nursing homes and assisted living facilities requiring or pressuring residents into signing-over their economic impact payment checks. These facilities have claimed that they were entitled to payments sent to residents who receive Medicaid. However, economic impact payments are tax credits that do not count as “resources” for federal benefits programs. Therefore, providers and their staff are not authorized, nor permitted to pressure residents, into surrendering economic impact payments. Doing so, could result in criminal, civil, or administrative sanctions.

The Division of Quality Assurance is not aware of this practice having occurred in Wisconsin. Providers who become aware of economic impact payments being taken from clients by their staff, or by other providers, must report these occurrences by filing a DQA complaint or submitting a report through the Misconduct Incident Reporting system.

DQA will investigate allegations or occurrences in Wisconsin and will take appropriate regulatory action to protect affected clients, including referral to the Wisconsin Department of Justice, to the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, and to the Federal Trade Commission

We appreciate your assistance in helping us address this problem and assuring the health, safety, and welfare of every person receiving health and community care provider services in Wisconsin.


On May 18, 2020, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) shared guidance is for all long-term care facilities, assisted living facilities, and facilities serving people with developmental disabilities in Wisconsin caring for patients who are elderly and/or have chronic medical conditions that place them at higher risk of developing severe complications from COVID-19. 

The full message is outlined here.


Update for Emergency Nurse Aide Training Programs Due to End of Public Health Emergency

Member Bulletin: Wisconsin Medicaid Response to COVID-19 Outbreak

Temporary Guidance for Remote Home and Community Based Waiver Services

The Badger Bounce Back Plan

PPE Request Process for Long-Term Care Providers Caring for COVID-19 Positive Individuals | March 9th, 2020

COVID-19 Status Updates | March 23rd, 2020

COVID-19 Status Updates: Message From Our CEO | March 16th, 2020

COVID-19 Status Updates | March 13th, 2020


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