Gov. John Baldacci has released a new two-year plan for improving public health and reducing health care costs in Maine.

Maine law requires a new plan every two years to guide policy and legislative action. The new plan lays out a strategy to contain or reduce health care costs and implement the federal health reform law passed in March, as well as guidelines for investments in technology, new buildings and new services, according to the Governor’s Office.

Baldacci’s plan also documents improvements made during his tenure. Maine is now rated as the ninth healthiest state, up from 16th in 2003, and it ranks sixth best in covering the uninsured, up from 19th in 2002, the plan says. While it targets rising costs, the plan says growth in premiums for workplace insurance is now lower here than the national average.

The Governor’s Office of Health Policy held public forums in each of Maine’s eight public health districts and with the Tribal District and held two public hearings with the council before completing the final plan.

The plan is available at,