Issues: Health Care

Senator Young Secures $5 Million in Funding for New York State Critical Access Hospitals

Critical Access Hospitals provide vital healthcare for rural communities

ALBANY – For the second year in a row, Senator Catharine Young (R,C,I-Olean), Chair of the Legislative Commission on Rural Resources, announced that she successfully secured funding crucial to the continued operation of New York’s Critical Access Hospitals.

“These facilities serve as a healthcare lifeline for many rural communities. The people they serve are reliant on the healthcare services they provide,” said Senator Young.

April 1, 2014
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SENATOR VALESKY ANNOUNCES EXPANSION OF SENIOR PRESCRIPTION DRUG PROGRAM IN FINAL NYS BUDGET

ALBANY, NY—State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida), Chair of the Senate Aging Committee, announced the state budget will expand the successful Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage (EPIC) Program to include more than 25,000 more seniors in New York State. Prescription drug rates have increased twice the rate of inflation, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, disproportionately affecting senior citizens, many of whom live on fixed incomes.

"Prescription drugs are one of the most expensive components of health care for seniors," Senator Valesky said. "With the cost of prescription drugs increasing significantly, it is important to expand the EPIC program to provide a safety net for more older New Yorkers."

March 29, 2014
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Senator Griffo's Weekly Column #13: Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

Colorectal cancer: The mere mention of these words has me squirming in my seat. And surely, I’m not alone.

It’s a subject no one wants to bring up in conversation, but also one that could save your life.

So allow me to get the conversation started, in honor of my mother – who is a survivor.

If you’re between 50 and 75 years old, you should be getting screened regularly for colorectal cancer. If you’re younger than 50 but there’s a family history of cancer, Crohn’s disease or colitis, you should be talking to your doctor about when to start getting tested.

March 27, 2014
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Your Voice with Senator Griffo

Senator Griffo discusses the Senate's budget resolution, and his priorities for tax relief, mandate relief, education, agriculture, health care and infrastructure. Hosted by Julia Lilkendey.

March 25, 2014
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Capital NY: Senate GOP lobbies Cuomo Medicaid waiver money upstate

By Laura Nahmias

ALBANY—A group of 13 Republican state senators has signed off on a letter to Governor Andrew Cuomo asking him to ensure upstate hospitals get a share of $8 billion in federal Medicaid waiver funds.

While the state and federal government reached a broad outline of an agreement more than a month ago to give New York state $8 billion over the next five years to transform its hospitals, that plan has not yet been finalized, in part because of continuing negotiations over which hospitals will qualify to receive the money, particularly over the definition of so-called “safety-net” hospitals.

March 20, 2014
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NAACP rally in support of the Affordable Care Act

Senator Smith and other leaders encouraged the community to sign up for healthcare.

March 7, 2014
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Senator Grisanti Will Back "Compassionate Care Act"

State Senator Mark Grisanti (R,IP,-Buffalo) announced today that he will support the "Compassionate Care Act", which would legalize the use of medical marijuana to treat certain diseases.

 

February 18, 2014
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Statement from State Senator Gustavo Rivera On $8 Billion MRT Waiver

"I commend Governor Cuomo for his relentless work in securing an agreement with the federal government that will allow our state to reinvest $8 billion into our healthcare system.  Not only will this funding be key in allowing our State to improve the quality and access of care for all New Yorkers, but it will also help create a more efficient healthcare system for our State's citizens. These dollars will be essential in repairing the economic strain many of our hospitals face and allow them to continue to provide care to the communities they serve.  This is truly a win for New York."  

February 13, 2014
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Press Release: Statement from Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins On $8 Billion MRT Waiver

“I want to thank the Governor for pushing hard for this wavier and working with our federal elected officials to come to an agreement with the Federal Government that would allow New York to reinvest $8 billion in savings to help rebuild our health care system. This much needed money will help so many communities across the state, especially Brooklyn, which have been hurt by inadequate health care services. I congratulate the Senate Democratic Conference’s Brooklyn Delegation including the Dean of the Delegation - Senator Montgomery, Senator Dilan, Senator Parker and Senator Squadron, whose relentless fight to save Brooklyn’s hospitals has been bolstered by this good news.”

February 13, 2014
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Senator Parker Recognizes February 7th as 'National Wear Red Day'

  (Brooklyn, NY) - Senator Kevin Parker (D-Brooklyn) today urged New Yorkers to celebrate National Wear Red Day this Friday, February 7th.

February 7, 2014
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Senator O'Brien, staff "Wear Red for Women"

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Senator Ted O'Brien and his district staff are all wearing shades of red today, joining thousands of people nationwide in observing "Wear Red for Women" Day, promoting awareness of the danger heart disease poses to women's health.

February 7, 2014
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Independent Health will continue to cover Medicaid beneficiaries in Niagara County

Senator George Maziarz (R-C, Newfane) is pleased to announce that Independent Health has agreed to renew its contract with New York State to offer Medicaid Managed Care, known as MediSource, in Niagara County.

February 5, 2014
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Lenox Hill Neighborhood House's Health Insurance Enrollment Day

Lenox Hill Neighborhood House is holding a Health Insurance Enrollment Day on Thursday, February 6!

Meet one-on-one with an application counselor to determine your eligibility for Medicaid, Child Health Plus or financial subsidies. Enroll in health insurance through the online marketplace -- NewYorkStateofHealth.ny.gov

February 6, 12:00 PM - 7:00 PM
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Sen. Parker Implores President Obama for Capital Infusion for Brooklyn Hospitals via Medicaid Waiver

In a letter to President Barack Obama, Senator Kevin Parker (D 21) describes the magnitude of Brooklyn's health care crisis, its looming fiscal challenges, and requests of the President that Brooklyn receives its $10 billion in waiver money from the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) which has not yet been granted. 

Please clink on the pdf link below to view the letter in its entirety. 

File: 
Letter to President Obama re CMS waiver monies for Brooklyn

January 27, 2014
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January 24, 2014
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January 27, 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
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Senator Griffo's Weekly Column #4: Be A Hero. Donate Blood.

With the new year upon us, here’s an easy resolution to make and keep: Be a hero and donate blood.

My suggestion requires no special powers or gadgets, but you still may get to save a damsel (or even a Don) in distress.

In one hour – the time it takes the watch an “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” episode  – you can donate enough to be a superstar in the lives of up to three people.

Who are these recipients?

They’re fighting cancer. Most of the 1.6 million people diagnosed last year will need regular blood transfusions during their chemotherapy.

January 23, 2014
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WABC 7 On Your Side: Health Exchange Problems with Empire Blue Cross

WABC 7's Nina Pineda reports on the continuing problems Empire Blue Cross / Blue Shield enrollees have been experiencing with actually receiving their proof of insurance and getting covered. Our office has been trying to assist constituents with the same problems and has gotten the State Attorney General's office involved.

January 21, 2014
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Capital New York: A.G. Probes Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield Over Health Exchange Complaints

Laura Nahmias reports in Capital New York:

New York state attorney general Eric Schneiderman is investigating insurer Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield after complaints from customers who paid for the company’s plans on the state's health exchange, but never received proof they enrolled.

...

State Sen. Liz Krueger, a Democrat, said she alerted the attorney general’s office to a potential systemic problem with Empire’s plans after fielding complaints from her constituents and attempting to resolve them through direct talks with the company. “We realized that this had to be much bigger than the individual complaints we were getting,” Krueger said. “Nobody was answering the phones at Blue Cross/Blue Shield,” she said.

January 16, 2014
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Senate Hearing Points Out Healthcare Exchange Trouble-spots

ALBANY, 01/13/14 – State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) today commented on a senate hearing regarding the implementation of the health insurance exchange (NY State of Health) as part of the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA):

“While New York has been doing a good job when compared with the federal exchange, a number of issues have been brought to my attention.  Individuals, sole proprietors, and small business owners have seen their policies cancelled, costs to obtain new policies have skyrocketed for some, and application counselors have been unable to provide assistance in several cases.

January 13, 2014
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