St. Joseph wins WHA All-Star Advocacy Award - Ascension Wisconsin

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Published on April 27, 2015

Wheaton Franciscan – St. Joseph wins the WHA All-Star Advocacy Award 

Wheaton Franciscan - St. Joseph Campus received the 2015 Advocacy All-Star Award for at the Wisconsin Hospital Association’s annual Advocacy Day. The award is presented each year to one hospital that has exemplified grassroots advocacy on key issues.
Fifty-five Wheaton leaders were among the more than 1,100 attendees from across the state at the event in Madison on April 27. In addition to being educated on significant health care issues, many also had visits with state elected officials. This year’s event was the largest in WHA history.
Over the past year, advocates from St. Joseph and other Wheaton sites have regularly contacted, hosted, and met with elected officials to discuss important health care issues, including advocating for improvements in Wisconsin’s Medicaid program. They have traveled to Washington, DC with WHA multiple times to make certain legislators are aware of how federal issues impact the hospital and local community.
“As all of us continue to invest in our hospitals to better serve our communities, we are asking our elected officials to also invest in us, Wisconsin hospitals, through appropriate Medicaid reimbursement and Disproportionate Share or DSH funding,” Standridge said in her acceptance speech. “At Wheaton, our physicians, leaders, and associates are passionate about caring for the communities we serve and we were not surprised when they stepped up to the plate and responded to our call to action this year to make their voice heard,” she added.
St. Joseph is home to the state’s busiest single hospital emergency department, seeing 84,000 patients last year. This year St. Joseph expects to serve 88,000, with 70% of those patients on Medicaid.
Advocacy Day is designed to educate and motivate health care employees, board members, and volunteers on important issues and to encourage grassroots advocacy. Attendees also met with state lawmakers to discuss the importance of improving Medicaid funding in our state.
“Our work is far from done but we know that we have a strong, collective voice that is being heard and is gaining traction and we are more than ready to continue these vital conversations,” added Standridge.

Collectively, Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare hospitals will experience more than 350,000 Medicaid visits this calendar year. And last year, Wheaton provided more than $42.7 million in charity care to patients who could not afford necessary care.