Expanding Health Care Coverage

Grantee Name

Cornell University, Department of Policy Analysis and Management

Funding Area

Expanding Health Care Coverage

Publication Date

June 2011

Grant Amount


Grant Date:

September 1, 2007-December 10, 2008


Approximately 2.5 million New Yorkers lacked health insurance in 2007, according to estimates from the United Hospital Fund, a New York health policy center.

During this time, incremental reforms had been established and momentum was building for more comprehensive reform. To gather and analyze the perspectives of employers and residents on this issue, Cornell University’s Department of Policy Analysis and Management conducted focus groups in upstate New York and administered a survey across the State, eliciting opinions from those who have no prior knowledge of specific reform proposals. Cornell University also conducted an opinion poll of a representative sample of New Yorkers to evaluate their knowledge of, and views on, possible options for increasing coverage.

This project was part of a larger NYHealth Coverage Consortium that funded 10 grants to seven universities, policy institutes, and community agencies across the State, supporting projects that could inform State health reform efforts, offer ways to streamline enrollment in public programs, significantly reduce costs and improve quality, and test ideas for expanding coverage among small employers, sole proprietors, and self-employed people.

Read an NYHealth special report that contains a summary of findings from this consortium.

Outcomes and Lessons Learned

  • Produced a report, “Informing Health Care Reform Options for New York State.”
  • Found that residents are open to a range of reform ideas. More than 80% said they would pay something for reforms that reduced the number of uninsured, and more than 60% said they would pay at least $50 per year.
  • Found that 72% of small employers, 79% of medium employers, and 88% of large employers said they bear some responsibility for providing coverage to their workers.