April 22, 2024
Albany, NY

Governor Hochul Announces Significant Steps to Improve New Yorkers’ Health as Part of FY 2025 Budget Agreement

Governor Hochul Announces Significant Steps to Improve New Yorkers’ Health as Part of FY 2025 Budget Agreement

Historic $37 Billion Medicaid Investment to Support the Health Care Safety Net and Transform the Health Care Delivery System

New York Becomes First State in the Nation to Create Paid Prenatal Leave For Pregnant Moms

Eliminates Out-Of-Pocket Medical Costs for Pregnancy-Related Benefits for New Yorkers on Essential Plan, Other Qualified Health Plans

Protects Consumers by Eliminating Co-Pays for Insulin for Any New Yorker on State-Regulated Health Insurance Plans

Combatting Medical Debt by Banning Hospitals from Suing Patients Earning Less than 400 Percent of Federal Poverty Level

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Governor Kathy Hochul today announced significant investments to support New York’s health care system as a part of the FY25 Executive Budget, including record investments in Medicaid and new policies that protect pregnant moms, diabetics and low-income individuals seeking medical care.

“No one should ever have to fear seeking care because of the costs it will impose or time missed from work,” Governor Hochul said. “From supporting pregnant moms to reducing insulin costs, we are taking action to ensure New Yorkers can access the care they need.”

Significant Investments in Medicaid for New Yorkers

Governor Hochul's FY25 Budget provides record funding to keep New Yorkers healthy, while also setting the Medicaid program on sustainable long-term fiscal footing. A historic $37 billion Medicaid investment maintains the State’s commitment to supporting the health care safety net and transforming the health care delivery system, while simultaneously making bold investments to expand access to services and support the workforce. The Budget also includes support for the State’s recently approved Medicaid 1115 Waiver amendment, investing $7.5 billion in federal and state funding to promote health equity across the State.

Improving Maternal Health

Through mandating a separate sick leave bank for prenatal care, New York will go further than any other state to ensure pregnant individuals can receive the health care needed to create healthy outcomes for parent and child without jeopardizing employment. Employees are now able to receive an additional 20 hours of paid sick leave for prenatal care in addition to the existing sick leave.

Studies show that prenatal health care is highly correlated with improved health outcomes for mothers and infants; and that pregnant mothers who have access to regular prenatal medical visits are less likely to die in childbirth, and their newborns are more likely to be healthy.

Providing prenatal leave builds on Governor Hochul’s previous actions to support new parents and improve maternal health outcomes, including offering 12 weeks of fully paid parental leave benefits to more than 80 percent of the state workforce and extending postpartum coverage for up to a full year after the end of a pregnancy for Medicaid and Child Health Plus enrollees.

In addition, the FY25 Budget also includes financial incentives for hospitals to reduce the number of unnecessary C-sections, and eliminates cost-sharing for certain pregnancy-related expenses, such as prenatal and postpartum visits, for Essential Plan and Qualified Health Plan enrollees.

Eliminating Co-Pays for Insulin

Governor Hochul signed legislation to eliminate insulin cost-sharing for any New Yorker on a State-regulated health insurance plan. This initiative will enact the most expansive prohibition against insulin cost-sharing in the nation, providing financial relief to New Yorkers and improving adherence to these life-saving medications. With 1.58 million New Yorkers diagnosed with diabetes, the proposal is estimated to save New Yorkers an estimated $14 million in 2025 alone.

According to the American Diabetes Association, people with diabetes have medical expenses that are 2.3 times higher than people who do not have diabetes and the impact is even larger for communities of color, which face disproportionately high diagnosis rates.

Combating Medical Debt

The FY25 budget includes bold new legislation to protect low-income New Yorkers from medical debt lawsuits by banning hospitals from suing patients earning less than 400 percent of the Federal Poverty Level, or $120,000 for a family of four. The legislation also expands hospital financial assistance programs for low-income New Yorkers, limits the size of monthly payments and interest charged for medical debt, implements other protections to improve access to financial assistance, and mitigates the deleterious effects of medical debt on New Yorkers.

More than 700,000 New Yorkers have medical debt in collections. Individuals with medical debt are less likely to seek necessary medical care and report being forced to cut back on critical social determinants of health, including food, heat, and rent. As a result, substantial debt levels threaten not only the financial stability of many individuals and families, but also undermine the State’s commitment to improving health equity and health outcomes.

Investing in SUNY Downstate

The Budget includes $300 million in capital funding and up to $100 million for operating expenses for SUNY Downstate. It also establishes an advisory board to evaluate and provide scalable options for a modernized and financially sound SUNY Downstate; the advisory board may consider 250% of the state’s capital commitment and secured federal dollars in their planning efforts.

Contact the Governor’s Press Office

Contact us by phone:

Albany: (518) 474-8418
New York City: (212) 681-4640


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