Unfortunately other services were not as fortunate as Medicaid. At DPH, the Governor has proposed reducing funding to local health departments, eliminating grants to community health centers, reducing grants to school-based health centers (because there are fewer uninsured due to the ACA), and $700,000 earmarked for asthma programs will be diverted from the Tobacco and Health Trust Fund to the General Fund. Fall prevention and respite care funding at the Dept. on Aging would be cut and mental health and substance abuse grants would be cut at the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. All those agencies will also have to cut 5.75% of operating costs if the Governor’s cuts are passed. Many observers are not only concerned about the cuts but also the lack of specificity; agency leadership will decide where to make cuts without legislative approval.
While the list of proposed cuts is long, it could be far worse. And please remember that because of cuts passed last year, about 18,000 working parents will lose HUSKY coverage this summer if nothing is done.