Panel recommends cap on Medicaid expenses

The Ithaca Journal
Thursday, February 24, 2011

A state panel tasked with reducing Medicaid costs by $2.3 billion has recommended placing a spending cap on the program and other measures to control expenses.

Some of the recommendations, such as changes to the medical-malpractice system, are controversial, and Assembly Health Committee Chairman Richard Gottfried, D-Manhattan, said the Assembly opposes that proposal. "There is a lot of good in this package, there's no doubt about that, but I think we are missing an opportunity, with some modifications, to have made it a lot better and more appropriate to vote on," Gottfried, who abstained, said after the meeting.

Members of the Center for Justice and Democracy, a consumer group in the state, spoke out against proposed changes to the medical-malpractice system that would cap non-economic damages and create an indemnity fund for neurologically impaired infants. Hospitals in New York spent $1.6 billion to cover medical-malpractice expenses in 2009, the state Health Department said.

For a copy of the complete article, contact CJ&D.

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