State Report: New York

February 1, 2008

Commonwealth Fund State Performance Ranking (2007): 22

Regarding SCHIP, CMS enforced new guidelines and denied New York's request to expand SCHIP coverage to children in families with incomes up to 400% of federal poverty level, which would have provided coverage to an additional 70,000 children. Eligibility currently is set at 250% of poverty level. New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer said the state is preparing a lawsuit to contest the new guidelines.

Most New York City hospitals are in compliance with a new state law that requires them to inform low-income, uninsured patients about financial assistance for medical treatment. Under the law, which took effect in January 2007, hospitals must inform uninsured patients verbally, in writing, or with prominently placed signage, that they could be eligible for state financial aid from an $847 billion charity-care hospital fund. About 40% of New York's 2.2 million uninsured persons are eligible for existing public coverage.

As far as the state's IT push is concerned, Mount Sinai Medical Center and nine other New York City metropolitan-area hospitals have launched a pilot program that provides patients with smart cards which can hold the equivalent of 30 pages of medical records, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. Forty-five New York and New Jersey hospitals eventually could participate in the program.

MHE Sources: Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services; Urban Institute; Kaiser Family Foundation; U.S. Census Bureau; The Commonwealth Fund