ElderBranch Examines Health and Health Care in New York State vs. the Nation

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How does New York stack up against the rest of the country on key health measures and outcomes? The data shows that despite a much higher spend per capita on health care, New Yorkers are not necessarily healthier than the average American.

ElderBranch has taken a look at the data on health care in New York State and pulled together some statistics from The Kaiser Family Foundation’s State Health Facts website (statehealthfacts.org). See the full article and accompanying graphic here.

On a per capita basis, health spending on New Yorkers is over 20% higher than the U.S. as a whole. Some part of the higher spend is likely driven by the higher cost of services in the state versus other parts of the country. However, it is disappointing to see that such a steep difference in per capita spend does not translate into better health outcomes. Overall, cancer incidence and deaths due to major diseases (including Alzheimer’s, diabetes and heart disease) are not that different in New York State versus the country overall.

Another interesting data point is around Medicaid coverage. While the percent of people living in poverty is approximately the same in New York compared to the U.S. overall, 27% of New Yorkers receive Medicaid benefits compared to only 20% of people nationally. One would expect to see roughly similar percentages (the percentage of people on Medicaid should approximate the percentage of people living in poverty). This discrepancy underscores what is already commonly known – that New York State’s Medicaid eligibility rules are more lax (i.e. offer coverage to a wider group of people) than many other states’.

On a positive note, nursing home care in New York is quite strong when compared to the U.S. overall. Both deficiencies, and specifically serious deficiencies, tend to be lower in New York, where the average number of deficiencies per home is 7.2 (versus 9.4 nationally) and the percentage of homes with serious deficiencies is 17.7% (versus 23.4% nationally). While it is true that nursing home care is comparatively strong in New York, it has unfortunately been getting worse over time (see our earlier report, New York Health Care Quality – Just “Average”?).

About ElderBranch
ElderBranch is an online information portal that helps people find and evaluate long-term care providers. ElderBranch’s mission is to support users in making the best decision possible for themselves and their loved ones. ElderBranch currently offers a comprehensive, national database of nursing homes and offers useful articles and tools to help users navigate senior care issues and decisions.

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Anila Sitaram Venkat
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Health Care in NYS vs. US