Governor Kathy Hochul today announced a historic $20 billion multi-year investment in healthcare in the state budget for fiscal year 2023. Creating better working conditions for healthcare workers will be a priority, with $1.2 billion dedicated to bonuses for front-line healthcare workers, as well as a multi-year, $4.5 billion investment in payment reform. Other notable investments include $2.4 billion for health infrastructure improvements and $3.9 billion in funding to provide relief to hospitals struggling financially due to the COVID-19 pandemic. An additional $7.7 billion will be spent over four years to raise the minimum wage for home health aides by $3. These groundbreaking investments will help improve working conditions and increase the workforce by 20% over the next five years, and improve health care industry for all New Yorkers.
“New York depends on a strong, stable and equitable healthcare system and at the very base are the workers of the industry, who have been asked to do the impossible and continue to do so two years after the start. of the pandemic”, Governor Hochul said. “This budget includes historic investments that will rebuild the health care economy by raising the wages of health care workers, improving their work infrastructure and providing incentives that will attract more people to the workforce. I thank Majority Leader Stewart-Cousins and Speaker Heastie for their work in ensuring that we build the healthcare economy of the future. »
More than $5 billion of this funding will go towards wage reform and wage premiums for healthcare workers. This includes $1.2 billion for retention bonuses for health and mental hygiene workers, with up to $3,000 in bonuses for workers earning less than $125,000 who remain on the job for a year. , and prorated bonuses for those who work fewer hours. $500 million will be spent on cost-of-living adjustments to raise the salaries of social service workers. The budget also includes a 5.4% cost of living adjustment for social service workers.
Improving healthcare infrastructure is essential not only to improve the working environment for healthcare workers, but also to significantly improve patient care and wait times. The budget establishes a new investment of $2.4 billion to fund infrastructure improvements in hospitals, nursing homes, ambulatory care centers, community centers and other health care facilities and providers. eligible health. Moreover, $3.9 billion in funding over four years — an 88% increase from the previous four years — will be dedicated to helping hospitals that are still struggling financially because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
To increase coverage and affordability for seniors, the enacted budget raises the income limit for New Yorkers 65 and older and for persons with disabilities to 138% of the federal poverty level, raises the income limit for health savings program and extends coverage for undocumented migrants. people aged 65 and over.
New York State is committed to addressing structural and institutional inequities in health care to create a safer childbirth experience for all mothers and families in the state, including those who do not have no papers. The budget will include more than $20 million in annual investments to expand access to holistic prenatal and postnatal care to reduce racial inequities and make quality care accessible to all mothers. The state will expand postpartum coverage for everyone who qualifies for Medicaid during pregnancy from 60 days to one year later. they give birth, leading to more equitable health outcomes across the state.