Codey SOS - Health Care
In our urban and rural areas, these centers are often the only medical option for Medicaid patients and the working poor with no insurance. In 1991, Wayne Bryant and I sponsored legislation to allow community health centers to receive state funding for the first time. And Wayne, along with Senators Rice and Lance and Assemblymen Greenwald and Payne have been their champion.
Even though we have 67 facilities, there are many communities in need that are not being served. Today I am setting a goal to open ten new centers next year. And with your help, these new centers will provide health care to 30,000 more residents.
Besides easy access to health care, these centers offer another benefit. They get a special federal discount on prescription drugs for their patients. But right now only two facilities have the expertise and resources to take advantage of this extraordinary benefit.
This means there are tens of thousands of needy patients that should have access to affordable prescription drugs but don't. I cannot stand by and do nothing while easy access to life-saving drugs is so near. So today I am making a commitment ... that the Department of Health will provide whatever support and whatever resources are necessary ... so every center in New Jersey can offer their patients cheaper prescription drugs.
What we are doing today is a start. There is more to be done. And I look forward to working with Senator Vitale and Assemblyman Morgan to expand health coverage.
Codey's entire State of the State address here.