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State tackles long-overdue redesign of Medicaid

The redesign team is comprised of 27 people that include medical and healthcare leaders throughout the state. The team will meet across the state, however, there are no meetings scheduled in Central or Upstate New York. The public is encouraged to participate and weigh in with their suggestions on the Governor's website. That form can be accessed at apps.nyhealth.gov/health_care/medicaid/redesign/contact_form.action. I would encourage you to participate in the survey form if you have some ideas on how to restructure or change Medicaid.

One of the easiest ways to save money within the Medicaid system is to begin with fraud, waste and abuse. It is estimated that 10% of total Medicaid dollars spent each year in New York is on waste, fraud and abuse. In 2005, Governor Pataki created the Office of the Medicaid Inspector General. This helped save the state a total of $551 million in 2008. This was a step in the right direction; however, more needs to be done. I am hopeful the redesign team can come up with a framework for public health insurance that is more within our means but still provides the necessary medical services that people require.

If you have any questions or comments on this or any other state issue, or if you would like to be added to my mailing list or receive my newsletter, please contact my office. My office can be reached by mail at 200 North Second St., Fulton, New York 13069, by e-mail at barclaw@assembly.state.ny.us or by calling 598-5185.

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