1. To provide the communities hardest-hit by COVID-19 with practical advice on how to maintain employer-based insurance coverage or find new coverage, we created a free consumer guide, Grim Times and Health Insurance, published in five languages. An estimated 1.4 million New Yorkers lost job-based coverage during the pandimic, putting them at risk when coverage is needed most.
2. In the early days of the pandemic, we built a COVID-19 resource center for pediatricians, parents, and social service providers to help them respond to threats to children’s health and well-being. And we are advancing the public dialogue on the pandemic and its effects through a new commentary series highlighting issues overlooked by the general press; these provide policymakers and other stakeholders with practical information and important insights on social factors driving health disparities.
3. As part of our Children’s Health Initiative, we launched a statewide pediatric health equity program aimed at transforming pediatric practices to achieve better health and educational outcomes for children and to strengthen families. The program’s online resource center is helping the state’s child health providers focus on health, social, and emotional development to encourage a more collective approach to equitable and healthy early childhood development.
4. We created a learning collaborative with eight skilled nursing facilities to design and implement strategies to improve transitions home for older adults at risk of declining health, social isolation, overuse of acute medical care, high levels of stress and anxiety, and dissatisfaction. The lessons are being shared widely and prioritize particularly needy or disadvantaged populations. We’re now working with six skilled nursing facilities to address the problem of polypharmacy for long-stay nursing home residents whose multiple medications may increase the likelihood of adverse effects.
5. In collaboration with Boston Consulting Group, we spotlighted the number of New Yorkers experiencing food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic. At the end of 2021, more than one in eight New Yorkers faced hunger, a figure that equates to 2.6 million people, including one out of five children and 75,000 adults over age 65. The researchers estimated that if food insecurity was reduced by just 20 percent, the state would save $550 million each year in health care costs associated with treating chronic disease.
6. Brought together hundreds of health care, business, and community leaders through our annual Medicaid conference, research symposium, and special events to spotlight accomplishment, share knowledge, and help focus attention on critical needs and priorities for health care improvement.
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