State Budgets Try Capping, Cutting Some Health Care Expenses
In New York, California and Maryland, reactions were varied to the governors' spending plans.
The Baltimore Sun: Critics Rail Against O'Malley's Spending Plan
Gov.Martin O'Malley's proposed budget was assailed on many fronts Wednesday as county executives, education advocates, Maryland hospitals and Republican leaders began making their case against the $36 billion spending plan. Some said cuts in payments to Medicaid providers would lead to higher medical bills for everyone else. Others argued that shifting $240 million in teacher pension costs to the counties would inevitably require cuts to community services — and schools (Linskey and Dresser, 1/19).
The New York Times: Cuomo Limits State Money For Salaries Of Contractors
Looking to rein in the use of public money to pay what he called excessive salaries, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo signed an executive order on Wednesday placing a $199,000 limit on the amount of state funds that contractors can use to pay executives. ... The move comes amid heightened scrutiny of high compensation at organizations that provide Medicaid-financed services to the developmentally disabled (Eligon, 1/18).
Modern Healthcare: Cuomo Wants More State Power Over Hospitals
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo proposed legislation that would give state health officials power to remove hospital managers and not-for-profit hospital board members. The legislation, included in the governor's proposed budget for the fiscal year that begins in April, would give the New York health commissioner authority to appoint temporary hospital leaders at hospitals where there are "significant management failures" or financial distress (Evans, 1/18).
California Healthline: Cuts, Policy Changes at Healthy Families Program
The most recent state budget proposal includes a variety of cost-saving measures in the Healthy Families program -- reduced reimbursement rates, higher premium prices, higher copays and a transition of its 877,859 children into managed care plans by the end of June 2013. ... money for plans covering health, dental and vision services dips from the current Healthy Families average of $103.44 down to $76.86 per person (Gorn, 1/19).