MRT Issues Final Plan for Medicaid Reform

May 04, 2012

The Cuomo Administration yesterday released the final report of the Governor’s Medicaid Redesign Team (MRT), A Plan to Transform the Empire State’s Medicaid Program: Better Care, Better Health, Lower Costs and a companion document containing the final MRT Work Group reports.

Much of what is included in the report will likely inform what is in the Medicaid 1115 waiver, which we believe is currently being developed by the Department of Health (DOH).

This action plan is the Administration’s multi-year road map that combines MRT Phase 1 and Phase 2 recommendations and translates those into the state’s proposed path for the future of Medicaid in New York.

This report is ambitious and complex, and contemplates major changes in the administration of the state’s Medicaid program, its structure, and its influence on the delivery of health care. Its scope reinforces the need for continued advocacy to assess the impact of these changes, to ensure broad stakeholder and legislative input as implementation proceeds, and to consider changes in the plan as necessary based on assessments of its impacts.

The final report represents the culmination of two years of MRT and Work Group activities to begin transforming the state’s Medicaid program to improve quality of care, coordinate care, and reduce costs. Throughout this process, HANYS and our members played a central role in surfacing important issues to ensure the ideas and views of HANYS and our members were considered. We will continue to solicit member input and work with the Governor’s office, state agencies, and the Legislature to influence and guide implementation of the MRT plan.

HANYS created a summary document of the 49-page final report that describes the key themes that are driving Medicaid reform in New York.


Some of the activities described in the report were included in the two most recent state budgets and are already being implemented; many others will likely be part of the Medicaid 1115 waiver currently under development; the report states that the waiver’s goals include:

  • reducing costs, improving patient outcomes, and reducing health disparities through the MRT reform initiatives;
  • ending the state’s Medicaid fee-for-service system and replacing it with a comprehensive, high-quality, and integrated care management system; and
  • implementing Affordable Care Act changes quickly and efficiently.

Further, the action plan embraces and is structured around achieving the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services “triple aim” approach to health care redesign:

  • improving the quality of care by focusing on safety, effectiveness, patient-centeredness, timeliness, efficiency, and equity;
  • improving health by addressing root causes of poor health, including poor nutrition, physical inactivity, and substance use disorders; and
  • reducing per capita costs.

The final MRT report comes on the heels of an announcement earlier this week that that spending came in $14 million below the Medicaid global spending cap for state fiscal year (SFY) 2011-2012.

For More Information

Contact Dennis Whalen, President, at (518) 431-7760 or at