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Panel will review ‘universal’ healthcare in New York

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s $175 billion spending plan does not include a provision for single-payer health care, but included in his 2019 agenda is a commission to review how to expand health care to all in the state.

The panel, billed in his State of the State book as a commission on “universal access to health care” will include health and insurance policy figures and is backed by the Department of Health and the Department of Financial Services, which regulates the insurance industry in New York.

The commission will be tasked with issuing a report to Cuomo by Dec. 1st.

“This review process will consider all options for advancing access to care, including strengthening New York’s commercial insurance market, expanding programs to include populations that are currently ineligible or cannot afford coverage, as well as innovative reimbursement models to improve efficiency and generate savings to support expanded coverage,” according to Cuomo’s policy book.

Less than 5 percent of New Yorkers are without some form of health care coverage and more than 4.7 million residents have enrolled through the state’s health insurance marketplace. New York was among the states that participated in the Medicare expansion under the Affordable Care Act.

Cuomo wants to codify aspects of that law, such as the health exchange, as a provision in his budget proposal.

Cuomo has used commissions and panels in the past to handle potentially thorny policy issues, including most recently a push to ban plastic bags.

Read more from the NY State of Politics Blog