Today, Governor Hochul signed four bills into law that improve health care access for New Yorkers. S.1839A/A.2609A requires the Health Equity Council to create recommendations to promote Sickle Cell Disease screening and detection. S.1451/A.782 expands on models to address disparities in health care access. S.3609B/A.3113A enhances the scope of Health Equity Impact Assessments to include reproductive health services and maternal health care. S.4097B/A.5817A organizes the collection of health care claims data in order to publish a New York State benefit hospital pricing report. In response, Speaker Adrienne Adams issued the following statement:

“The health of our communities is directly tied to New Yorkers’ access to high-quality care, and Governor Hochul signing this important bill package into law is an important step forward for our state. These important health equity bills to expand access to health care and promote better detection for Sickle Cell Disease can help improve outcomes for New Yorkers, especially in Black communities and other communities of color.

“With Black New Yorkers nine times more likely than white New Yorkers to die of pregnancy-related issues and one in 13 Black babies born with the Sickle Cell trait in the United States, among other disparities, the stakes couldn’t be clearer. This only underscores the need to address the inequities in awareness, treatment, and outcomes that maintain negative health outcomes in many of our diverse communities.

“I thank Senate Majority Leader Stewart-Cousins and Assembly Speaker Heastie for their leadership, State Senators Sanders, Webb, and Gounardes, and Assembly Members Hyndman, Peoples-Stokes, Clark, and Solages for sponsoring these bills, and Governor Hochul for signing them into law.”