Governor Cuomo is coming to Syracuse University to make a speech this morning, and I have just one question I’d like to ask him.
When charities ask for money to help the poor, one of the ways we track their usefulness is by looking at how much of the donated money is applied to direct services for those in need, and how much goes to administration of the charitable agency.
My question is “How much of the taxpayers’ money that goes to Medicaid is spent on direct service and how much is spent on administration?”
That’s a pretty reasonable question, isn’t it? It is a question we ask of non-profits, and the government is a non-profit agency, so let’s ask the government. Of all the money that you coerce from taxpayers, how much goes to direct services for sick people?
What is the budget of the NYS Dept. of Health? How many staff members devote more than fifty percent of their workday to Medicaid issues? What is the total amount that they are paid? Additionally, how much do their benefits cost taxpayers? Let’s ask the same questions about the Office of the Medicaid Inspector General, which was created in this decade and has grown enormously. What other New York State government departments, agencies and offices are working on Medicaid issues? How much are their employees costing us?
Now let’s ask some questions about Medicaid recipients. How many are there? In 2010, how much was spent paying the medical bills for those people? How much was paid to hospitals, nursing homes, home health aides, physicians and other health care providers, pharmacies and transportation?
How much money is being paid for patient care, and how much is being paid for processing paperwork?
How much is being spent on Medicaid fraud—the hotline, the people who process complaints, the investigators and lawyers and administrators and record keepers? And what is the dollar value of the fraud they have successfully prosecuted? And what is the dollar value of the cost of prosecution?
Governor Cuomo, can you tell me how much of the New York State budget goes directly to the medical needs of poor people, and how much goes to processing applications, recording data, monitoring recipients, investigating complaints, prosecuting fraud, and supervising and administering all the people who do all those things?
How much of the taxpayers’ money goes to treating poor sick people and how much goes to government bureaucracy? How much should? Where is the real waste in Medicaid? Are we trying to cut services when we should be trying to cut government administration?