Policy Issues

Burdensome Health Insurance Taxes

Taxes on health insurance have grown dramatically over the last 20 years – now totaling $5.57 billion. With employers responsible for a significant portion of the private health insurance premiums, the state taxes on private coverage are viewed as “hidden” business taxes. They are already the largest business tax that employers and individuals pay. PDF version

Rising Cost of Prescription Drugs

Prescription drug costs continue to be a major driver of health insurance costs. While the huge spikes in the cost of some drugs, like the EpiPen, are well known, drug costs continue to rise due to extremely high initial pricing, unpredictable price hikes, and efforts to dissuade the use of more cost-efficient, quality alternatives such as generic medications.

NYSCOP supports measures aimed at addressing the impact drug costs are having on insurance premiums. These proposals include:

– Shedding light how much drug manufacturers spend on researching, developing, producing and distributing drugs compared to the billions of dollars spent on marketing, advertising, and promotional efforts such as co-pay coupons;
– Understanding how much profit drug companies are making on the various products; and
– Restoring tools that allow health plans to ensure consumers are using effective, affordable drugs to counteract aggressive marketing of unnecessary, high cost drugs.

View relevant documents:

– A Simple Truth: Prescription Drug Costs Are Too High
News Release | Infographic
– Curbing Opioid Abuse Starts With Educating Patients and Prescribers Of Risks
News Release | Infographic
The Facts About Pharmacies and Prescription Drugs
Prescriber Prevails for Medicaid Managed Care Legislative Memo
Mail Order Pharmacy Legislative Memo

One year on, hospital price transparency is still a work in progress
January, 2022

Insurers pay steep markups for hospital drugs
November 2021

A Covid test costing more than a Tesla? It happened in Texas
Kaiser Health News
September 2021

How America’s top hospitals hound patients with predatory billing
June 2021

Some of America’s wealthiest hospital systems ended up even richer, thanks to federal bailouts
The Washington Post
April 2021

When Government Sets Hospital Prices: Maryland’s Experience
Manhattan Institute
June 2019

Hospital Revenue Surge Creates Haves and Have-Nots
Empire Center
March 2019

Hospital group, union blame Trump tax cuts for Cuomo’s retreat on Medicaid spending
March 2019

New York-Presbyterian faces backlash on pricing at council hearing
November 2018

NYC Council Hearing on NY Presbyterian Exorbitant Prices – 32BJ SEIU Press Release
November 2018

Fact Sheet: New York-Presbyterian’s High-Priced Hospitals
November 2018

How Much Should a Knee Replacement Cost? NYC Council Wants to Find Out
Wall Street Journal
November 2018

When Hospitals Merge to Save Money, Patients Often Pay More
New York Times
November 2018

Grassley Seeks FTC Assessment of Reported Health Insurance Scheme that May Increase Patients’ Cost of Care
October 2018

Sen. Chuck Grassley Asks FTC to Probe Hospital Contracts
Wall Street Journal
October 2018

Health Care Spending Under Employer-Sponsored Insurance: A 10-Year Retrospective
Health Care Cost Institute
September 2018

Behind Your Rising Health-Care Bills: Secret Hospital Deals That Squelch Competition
Wall Street Journal
September 2018

Why Are Hospital Prices Different? An Examination of New York Hospital Reimbursement
New York State Health Foundation
December 2016

The Price Ain’t Right? Hospital Prices and Health Spending on the Privately Insured
The National Bureau of Economic Research
May 2018

Why Is U.S. Health Care So Expensive? Some of the Reasons You’ve Heard Turn Out to Be Myths
New York Times
March 2018