The Wisconsin State Legislature has adjourned for the 2021-22 Legislative Session. The Governor has acted on all of the bills that made it to his desk. Bills that did not make it to the Governor’s desk are dead and will need to be re-introduced next session.
Highlights from the 2021-22 Legislative Session:
- Governor Evers signed 267 bills into law.
- Governor Evers vetoed 126 bills
- The Assembly introduced 1,198 bills.
- The Senate introduced 1,107 bills.
A list of all the bills WRS was following this session is attached. Highlights are summarized below.
Signed into Law
Physician Assistants: 2021 Wisconsin Act 23, authored by Representative Nancy VanderMeer (R-Tomah) and Senator Kathy Bernier (R-Chippewa Falls), updates practice standards for physician assistants. It allows a physician assistant to practice without a physician being physically present, but it still requires PAs to have a collaborative relationship with a physician (i.e. no independent practice). It also repeals the physician to PA ratio of 1:4, which means that physicians can supervise an unlimited number of PAs.
Out-of-State Health Care Providers: 2021 Wisconsin Act 10, authored by Representative Nancy VanderMeer (R-Tomah) and Senator Patrick Testin (R-Stevens Point), creates a process that allows out-of-state health care providers to begin practicing in Wisconsin before they have a Wisconsin license.
Passive Review of Licenses: 2021 Wisconsin Act 118, authored by Representative Warren Petryk (R-Town of Washington) and Senator Dale Kooyenga (R-Brookfield), allows individual credential boards to delegate the ability to DSPS to make determinations about whether or not an applicant should be licensed.
Naturopathic Doctors: 2021 Wisconsin Act 130, authored by Representative Jessie Rodriguez (R-Oak Creek) and Senator Kathy Bernier (R-Chippewa Falls), creates a Naturopathic Doctor license in Wisconsin. They can order x-rays but are not allowed to perform imaging.
Health Care Worker Safety: 2021 Wisconsin Act 209, authored by Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) and Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu (R-Oostburg), makes it a felony to intentionally cause bodily harm or to threaten to cause bodily harm to a health care workers.
APRN Independent Practice: Governor Evers vetoed SB 394, authored by Representative Rachael Cabral-Guevara (R-Appleton) and Senator Patrick Testin (R-Stevens Point), which would have allowed Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) to practice independently after less than two years of working under physician supervision.
Complementary and Alternative Health Care Providers: Governor Evers vetoed AB 86, authored by Representative Barbara Dittrich (R-Oconomowoc) and Senator Mary Felzkowski (R-Irma), which would have set practice standards for complementary and alternative health care providers.
Failed to Pass
Breast Cancer Supplemental Screening: AB 416/SB 413, authored by Representative Rachael Cabral-Guevara (R-Appleton) and Senator Alberta Darling (R-River Hills), would have required health plans to cover supplemental breast cancer screenings like MRI or ultrasound and cap patient co-pays at $50.
Surprise Billing: AB 1185, authored by Representative Sara Rodriguez (D-Brookfield), would have placed surprise billing protections in Wisconsin state statute. This would have included setting up a Wisconsin IDR system run by the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance.
Provisional Licenses: AB 217/SB 232, authored by Representative Cody Horlacher (R-Mukwonago) and Senator Dale Kooyenga (R-Brookfield), would have required DSPS to set up a provisional license process that would allow people to begin working while they wait for their license application to be approved.