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New York paid 45 percent more than California for COVID-19 tests from a Hochul donor

Sep 16, 2022 1:34 pm

Chris Bragg reports in the Times Union that the state of California paid 45 percent less than New York for the same COVID-19 tests supplied by a donor to Gov. Kathy Hochul. New York spent New York's $637 million on the tests from the New Jersey-based distributor Digital Gadgets, LLC. That is $286 million more than the price California was charged. Digital Gadgets, LLC is a company owned by a New York City family that has donated nearly $300,000 to Hochul’s campaign. California bought the tests directly from the manufacturer at $6.75 per test, while New York paid the distributor $12.25 per test. New York bought the tests three weeks earlier than California, during a shortage of tests that may explain some of the price disparity. "The price is just way off the map, and we still haven't heard anything close to a convincing explanation for why the price was so high, and why the Hochul administration not only accepted a price that was so high, but made this their primary supplier," said Bill Hammond, senior fellow for health policy at the Empire Center for Public Policy. “If the tests were being sold to another state at the same time — at a better price — New York should have been able to get something closer to that price, even if the state was snapping up the last tests available." Read more about this story in the Times Union.

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