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LFC Budget Includes Affordable Health Coverage Funds

on January 10, 2020 - 8:44am
NMTH News:
SANTA FE — The Legislative Finance Committee unveiled its FY 2021 budget proposal Tuesday, which included $500,000 critical to helping the Human Services Department “prepare to implement affordable health coverage options” for New Mexicans.
One of the main coverage options being considered is Medicaid Buy-in, an innovative policy that allows uninsured and under-insured New Mexicans to pay a monthly premium to receive trusted Medicaid coverage.
“This funding shows that the Legislature is serious about working with the administration to ensure that all New Mexicans have health care,” said Strong Families New Mexico community leader Ali Moore, who recently shared her personal health care story in The Santa Fe New Mexican. “In New Mexico, we value family. Medicaid Buy-in would allow new moms like me to focus on our families—not on sky-high doctor bills.”
Under the heading of “Coverage Initiatives” in the LFC’s budget proposal for HSD, the funding is specifically designated to:
“…prepare to implement affordable health coverage options for uninsured and underinsured New Mexicans. HSD indicates its initial efforts will include a comprehensive study to identify target populations, benefit packages, and coverage options targeted to have the greatest impact for New Mexicans. The coverage initiatives should be affordable and sustainable and maximize federal funding.”
“We appreciate the Legislative Finance Committee’s plan to invest in affordable health coverage options,” said Colin Baillio, director of Policy and Communication with Health Action NM. “Medicaid Buy-in is an ideal option that will make it easier to help New Mexicans pay for health care and will allow the state to leverage—and maximize—federal funding.”
Medicaid Buy-in, which has been supported by the Governor and the Legislature, is a popular idea in the state.
“From Gallup to Doña Ana and up to Rio Arriba, New Mexico families are ready for Medicaid Buy-in,” said Strong Families New Mexico Field Director Adriann Barboa. “Whether it’s a Navajo mom who needs specialized care for her son outside of Indian Health Services or a father in Sunland Park trying to provide for his family, New Mexicans want a way to keep their families safe and healthy. Medicaid Buy-in, and this funding proposal from LFC, will change lives in our state.”
LFC’s proposed budget, along with the Governor’s budget proposal, will be considered and acted on during the 2020 Legislative Session, which begins Jan. 21.