Armstrong Bill Will Measure Affordable Care Act's Impact on Uncompensated Care in New Mexico

Armstrong Introduces Memorial to Study
ACA’s  Impact on Uncompensated Care in NM Hospitals

LFC Would Assess Uncompensated Care Changes Made by Affordable Care Act


Rep. Deborah Armstrong, a long-time health care advocate and member of the House Health Committee, has introduced HM 33, which would require the Legislative Finance Committee to study the change in uncompensated care costs incurred by New Mexico hospitals since the enactment of the federal Affordable Care Act.

The memorial cites several positive changes in the amount of uncompensated care and the number of uninsured people overall that are projected results ACA and Medicaid expansion. Specifically, the ACA is expected to reduce the number of uninsured New Mexicans by at least 280,000 by 2015, and the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services has found that uncompensated care has been reduced by at least 25 percent in states, like New Mexico, that adopted Medicaid expansion

“We expect to see the amount of uncompensated care in New Mexico decrease dramatically as a result of the federal Affordable Care Act and Medicaid expansion,” Armstrong said, “but we must do our homework and make sure that our hospitals and patients are actually seeing the financial benefit of these programs.”

The LFC would conduct its study this year and presents its findings to the Legislative Health & Human Services Committee in October.

HM 33 has been referred to the House Health Committee and the House Appropriations and Finance Committee. It is expected to be heard in its first committee next week.


About Rep. Armstrong: Debbie is a long-time health care advocate. Having started her career as a physical therapist, she has worked extensively as a health care administrator, working 10 years with Presbyterian Medical Services in Santa Fe. Prior to serving as Secretary of New Mexico’s Aging and Long-Terms Services Department, she oversaw the department’s Consumer and Elder Rights Division. Debbie is the mother of three adult children. She lives in Albuquerque’s North Valley.  Follow her on Twitter @NMRepArmstrong and on Facebook, and sign up for email and text updates.

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