Pataki's plan for Medicaid could have negative impact on BX and city residents

A new Medicaid proposal by Governor George Pataki (R-NY) could end up saving the city millions but could negatively impact health care recipients.

As part of his 2005 budget plan, Pataki wants to slash Medicaid costs by nearly $1 billion. Under the cost-saving measure, family health plus, a program that covers low-income families in the Bronx and city, would change. Patients would be required to pay a $250 copayment for each hospital visit. In addition, coverage of mental health treatment would be eliminated.

The governor says the plan will save the city around $380 million next year. The state Legislature has rejected past efforts to trim Medicaid. New York State's Medicaid program is the most expensive in the nation.

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