The New Mexico Health Security Act
Rising premiums and copays, shrinking provider networks, no end in sight to drug price increases, and more and more plans with high deductibles—that’s what New Mexicans are facing today. The need for new approaches has taken center stage.
It’s time for New Mexico to take control of its health care destiny by setting up its own health coverage plan. Under the Affordable Care Act, states can receive an innovation waiver to develop their own plans. And there is no question that there is a strong message coming from Washington, DC, to encourage states to take over the responsibility for health care coverage.
The New Mexico Health Security Act, which has been vetted by diverse New Mexicans for years, provides a well-thought-out solution.
What the NM Health Security Act proposes:
Under the proposal, New Mexico will set up its own health insurance plan—the Health Security Plan—that will cover almost all New Mexico residents. (Federal retirees, active duty and retired military, and TRICARE recipients will continue with their federal plans. The tribes, as sovereign nations, may choose to join the Plan. Health plans covered under ERISA have the option of joining the Plan.)
The Plan shifts private insurance to a supplemental role (as traditional Medicare does). Plan members have guaranteed access to comprehensive, quality health care coverage, regardless of income level or health and employment status.
A carefully considered approach:
✔ Phase 1 (in process): The financial analysis phase, when the Legislative Finance Committee, with public input, determines:
✔ Phase 2: Legislative and gubernatorial approval of the financial analysis report. If not approved, the Plan will not go into effect.
✔ Phase 3: Development of the Plan, with legislative, executive, and public input, and application for any waivers needed so the Plan can begin operations and receive all federal tax credits and subsidies.
The NM Health Security Plan also:
Guarantees choice of provider, even across state lines
Guarantees a good benefit package that must be as comprehensive as the services offered state employees
Preserves the private delivery system (private physicians, hospitals, etc.)
Provides strong protections for retirees
Reduces overhead costs for health care providers and facilities