De Blasio guarantees health care for all New York City residents regardless of ability to pay

January 08, 2019 - 9:13 am

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio has guaranteed health care for all New York City residents regardless of their ability to pay.

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The mayor made the announcement Tuesday morning on MSNBC.

"This has never been done in the country in a comprehensive way," de Blasio said. "Health care isn't just a right in theory, it must be a right in practice. And we're doing that here in this city."

The plan will cover primary and specialty care including pediatricians, OBGYN, geriatric, and more. De Blasio says the city's public health insurance option provides a foundation to the plan which will provide care to some 600,000 uninsured New Yorkers.

The mayor told MSNBC that the city is already footing the bill for pricey emergency room visits.

"We're already paying an exorbitant amount to pay for health care the wrong way," de Blasio said, "What we should be doing is helping them get the primary care."

More details on the mayor's 'NYC Care' program were to be released later on Tuesday.

"This is the city paying for direct comprehensive care (not just ERs) for people who can't afford it, or can't get comprehensive Medicaid -- including 300,000 undocumented New Yorkers," spokesman Eric Phillips tweeted.

Reports say the program would cost $100 million.