Friday, 14 January 2011 00:00
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced Senator Kemp Hannon as a key member to his Medicaid Redesign Team. The team, established by an executive order announced by Cuomo in his State of the State address, is charged with finding ways to save money within the Medicaid program for the upcoming state budget for the 2011-12 Fiscal Year.
“Medicaid fraud is possibly costing New York State taxpayers billions of dollars. We cannot afford or accept the status quo any longer,” said Hannon. “Long term, our desired objective must include the implementation of an effective and efficient method of delivering Medicaid services to our seniors and those citizens whom are most in need. Simultaneously, we must ensure that the protection of our taxpayers is a top priority,” Hannon continued.
Hannon recently participated in the team’s first meeting via conference call. The team is scheduled to submit its first report with findings and recommendations to the governor by March 1 for consideration in the budget process. The team shall submit quarterly reports thereafter until the end of Fiscal Year 2011-12, when it disbands.
“This team is tasked with the challenge of reversing a decades-long crisis of overspending and waste in our Medicaid system,” Cuomo said. “We need to come together to find solutions to bring costs down without compromising care for New Yorkers and that is exactly what this team is going to do.”
New York’s multi-billion dollar Medicaid program is paid for by state, county and federal taxes. In a majority of the state’s counties, Medicaid costs alone account for more than half of the entire county tax levy. New York spends more than twice the national average on Medicaid on a per capita basis, and spending per enrollee is the second highest in the nation. At the same time, New York ranks 21st out of all states for overall health system quality and ranks last among all states for avoidable hospital use and costs.
New York State Medicaid Director Jason Helgerson will serve as the team’s executive director and the state budget director will serve as a non-voting member.