NMHIX, local health orgs adapting to abbreviated exchange enrollment timeline

December 5, 2013 • Local News

Outreach worker for La Casa Family Health Center Alice Palma-Aarmendariz helps a couple sign their family up for Medicaid during her third of four enrollment appointments Wednesday. (Tess Townsend Photo)

The New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange (NMHIX) and local health care organizations are racing to adapt to an abbreviated window of time to enroll patients in insurance plans offered on the federal health insurance exchange for individuals.

The exchange website was virtually out-of-service until the federal government made alterations to it last weekend. The fixes mean increased capacity for enrollment through the site, but their timing leaves only three months until the March 31 deadline for the exchange’s open enrollment period, as opposed to the six-month window originally slated.

The exchange, which was established under the Affordable Care Act, offers subsidized health plans to patients who make between 138 and 400 percent of the federal poverty line. New Mexico currently runs on the federal exchange, but will adopt its own exchange within the next year. NMHIX will run the state exchange.

La Casa Family Health Center, which has locations in Chaves, Roosevelt, Curry and Lincoln Counties, may temporarily open on Saturdays to accommodate enrollment demand, according to David Briseno, director of outreach for the community health clinic organization.

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