NEW YORK, NY (08/31/2010)(readMedia)-- Governor David A. Paterson today named 37 organizations to the Health Care Reform Advisory Committee, which will provide input to the Governor's Health Care Reform Cabinet on the implementation of federal health care reform in New York State. The Advisory Committee includes organizations representing health care providers, consumers, businesses, organized labor, local governments, health plans and health insurers, and health policy experts.
"Federal health care reform will have a significantly positive impact for New York's residents, families, small business owners and the 2.5 million New Yorkers who are currently uninsured," Governor Paterson said. "It is essential that we get health reform right, making the most of this opportunity to improve access to health care while reducing cost. Our broad advisory group will help us achieve this goal."
The Advisory Committee will advise the Cabinet on reform provisions and ensure stakeholder and public engagement in all aspects of federal health care reform. It will support the implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act. In addition, Advisory Committee Workgroups will be created to focus on specific issues and additional organizations with expertise will be asked to join those work groups. A series of public forums across the State will also be held to provide opportunities for further stakeholder input.
Wendy Saunders, Deputy Secretary for Health, Medicaid and Oversight and Chair of the Health Care Reform Cabinet, said: "I commend Governor Paterson for his dedication to health care reform and for his efforts to expand access to quality health care for all New Yorkers. Implementing federal health care reform is a complex task, and many decisions must be made by the end of this year. We need public participation and input to help make reform a success and the Advisory Committee is an essential part of that input."
The Health Care Reform Cabinet is responsible for:
• Identifying deadlines for the completion of interim or final steps necessary or desired to comply with the provisions of federal health care reform;
• Determining those provisions of federal health care reform with which the State must comply and those that are optional, and evaluating whether participation in optional programs is appropriate;
• Assessing the State's capacity to carry out those provisions of federal health care reform that affect or potentially affect the State;
• Identifying any changes needed to State statute, regulation, policy or procedure in order to implement such provisions, and facilitating the achievement of such changes as necessary;
• Communicating with the federal government, local governments, other states, health care providers, and other stakeholders as advisable or necessary; and
• Providing public outreach to educate individuals on the implementation of the reforms as necessary.
Under Governor Paterson's leadership, New York State has become a national leader in expanding access to quality health care for children and adults through its public health insurance programs, including Child Health Plus, Family Health Plus, Healthy New York and Medicaid, while implementing efficiencies to ensure that funds are used in the most cost-effective manner. New York is the only state in the nation with both open enrollment and pure community rating and has been a leader in efforts to guarantee access to private health insurance coverage.
Organizations participating in the Governor's Health Care Reform Advisory Committee include:
• 1199 SEIU
• Business and Labor Coalition of New York
• Business Council of New York State
• Centerstate CEO
• Chamber Alliance of New York State
• Children's Defense Fund
• Coalition of New York State Public Health Plans
• Community Health Care Association of New York State
• Community Service Society
• Consumer Directed Choices
• Empire Justice Center
• Family Planning Advocates
• Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency
• Greater New York Hospital Association
• Health Care for All New York
• Healthcare Association of New York State
• Hispanic Federation
• Medicaid Matters
• Medical Society of the State of New York
• Medicare Rights Center
• National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS
• New York Health Plan Association
• New York Immigration Coalition
• New York State Association of Counties
• New York State Association of Health Underwriters
• New York State Conference of Blue Cross Plans
• New York State Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare
• New York State Health Foundation
• New Yorkers for Accessible Health Coverage
• Office of the Mayor of New York City
• P2 Collaborative of Western New York
• Partnership for New York City
• Project CHARGE
• United Hospital Fund
• Visiting Nurse Service of New York
• Young Invincibles
For additional information on health care reform implementation in New York State, please visit: www.HealthCareReform.ny.gov.