A Question for Governor Cuomo


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?

About annecwoodlen

I am a tenth generation American, descended from a family that has been working a farm that was deeded to us by William Penn. The country has changed around us but we have held true. I stand in my grandmother’s kitchen, look down the valley to her brother’s farm and see my great-great-great-great-great-grandmother Hannah standing on the porch. She is holding the baby, surrounded by four other children, and saying goodbye to her husband and oldest son who are going off to fight in the Revolutionary War. The war is twenty miles away and her husband will die fighting. We are not the Daughters of the American Revolution; we were its mothers. My father, Milton C. Woodlen, got his doctorate from Temple University in the 1940’s when—in his words—“a doctorate still meant something.” He became an education professor at West Chester State Teachers College, where my mother, Elizabeth Hope Copeland, had graduated. My mother raised four girls and one boy, of which I am the middle child. My parents are deceased and my siblings are estranged. My fiancé, Robert H. Dobrow, was a fighter pilot in the Marine Corps. In 1974, his plane crashed, his parachute did not open, and we buried him in a cemetery on Long Island. I could say a great deal about him, or nothing; there is no middle ground. I have loved other men; Bob was my soul mate. The single greatest determinate of who I am and what my life has been is that I inherited my father’s gene for bipolar disorder, type II. Associated with all bipolar disorders is executive dysfunction, a learning disability that interferes with the ability to sort and organize. Despite an I.Q. of 139, I failed twelve subjects and got expelled from high school and prep school. I attended Syracuse University and Onondaga Community College and got an associate’s degree after twenty-five years. I am nothing if not tenacious. Gifted with intelligence, constrained by disability, and compromised by depression, my employment was limited to entry level jobs. Being female in the 1960’s meant that I did office work—billing at the university library, calling out telegrams at Western Union, and filing papers at a law firm. During one decade, I worked at about a hundred different places as a temporary secretary. I worked for hospitals, banks, manufacturers and others, including the county government. I quit the District Attorney’s Office to manage a gas station; it was more honest work. After Bob’s death, I started taking antidepressants. Following doctor’s orders, I took them every day for twenty-six years. During that time, I attempted%2
This entry was posted in American medical industry, drugs, Fraud, Government Services, Health Care, Medicaid, Medical care, Poverty, Values and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A Question for Governor Cuomo

  1. Benji says:

    I am a Medicaid worker in Manhattan.
    I just want to get this word out.
    Medicaid is so fraught with fraud it’s scarey and it takes a lot to scare me.

    I just made a blog myself -I am not much of a writer but the data speaks for itself.

    Fraud DoctoRx
    http://frauddoctorx.blogspot.com/2011/03/fraud-doctorx.html

    Thanks,
    Benji

    • annecwoodlen says:

      The data you present is complicated and esoteric. Only a forensic accountant would be able to figure out if it’s correct. Your writing is good, which gives you credibility, but your conclusions are not supported by any facts. You believe that money is going to Russia and drugs are going to South America, but you make no link from your analysis of accounting trends to these theories. I have personal experience with the folks in the Office of the Medicaid Inspector General and have found them to be pretty solid people. If they’re not listening to you, there’s a reason. If you want to press your case further, I would suggest that you get a written statement from a psychiatrist giving you a clean bill of health and stating that you are not paranoid. It would give you credibility and get people to pay attention to you.

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