April 1, 2015

SFY 2015-16 Budget Preserves Access to Affordable Health Care for New Yorkers

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and Health Committee Chair Richard Gottfried announced today that the SFY 2015-16 Budget provides more than $86.1 million in funding for Medicaid initiatives and restores millions in funding to support community health programs that will ensure access to quality, affordable care and service for New Yorkers.

"An adequately funded and accessible public health system is essential to protecting the health and well-being of the people of this state," said Heastie. "This year's budget responsibly balances the needs facing our healthcare facilities and medical providers as well as the needs of the communities they serve."

"Health care is a human right and the Assembly Majority is committed to providing high-quality, accessible care throughout the state," said Assembly Member Gottfried, chair of the Assembly Health Committee. "Within our resources, we've protected and strengthened programs to provide health care for needy New Yorkers, especially the elderly and people with disabilities, and supported the health care providers we all depend on."

In addition to providing capital assistance for hospital facilities, the enacted budget will continue to directly fund dozens of community health programs across the state and maintain prescription drug assistance to ensure that lower income New Yorkers can continue to afford the treatment they need. The final budget also restores funding to continue Medicaid support for elderly New Yorkers who require costly long term care, without jeopardizing the financial viability of their spouses.

Heastie and Gottfried noted that the Assembly fought for funding in the budget to continue the state's investment in HIV/AIDS and STD prevention programs. The Assembly also pushed for funding restorations to continue the availability of other critical health programs such as maternal and child health services, chronic disease prevention, screening services for sickle cell and other genetic diseases, rural health development, obesity and diabetes prevention, prenatal care assistance and various school-based health programs.

Funding for other Assembly priorities is also included in the budget, including $8.5 million for the Spinal Cord Injury Research Program, $3.9 million for Infertility Services and $3.3 million for the Enhancing the Quality of Adult Living (EQUAL) program, which supports adult care facilities to enhance the residents' quality of care and life experience.

Additional funds are provided for the following programs and services: