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PNS Daily Newscast - November 16, 2018 


Winter Storm Avery takes lives, puts the brakes on commutes across the Northeast. Also on our Friday rundown: A first-of-its-kind report calls for policies to ease transitions of young people living in foster care. And "got gratitude" this holiday season? It could benefit your health.

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Final Hours for NM Residents to Enroll in ACA for 2018

New Mexico's health care exchange program has extra staff on duty to help residents meet the Friday deadline for buying health insurance through the Affordable Care Act. (Be Well NM)
New Mexico's health care exchange program has extra staff on duty to help residents meet the Friday deadline for buying health insurance through the Affordable Care Act. (Be Well NM)
December 14, 2017

SANTA FE, N.M. – The deadline for New Mexico residents to enroll for health insurance in 2018 through the Affordable Care Act is Friday.

Despite an effort by the Trump administration to end the ACA, also known as Obamacare, the government said Wednesday that the number of consumers who signed up for the 2018 program surpassed the 1 million mark in the second-to-last week of enrollment, but is still down from last year.

Veronica Reyes, outreach manager with the state exchange program New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange or Be Well NM, says extra staff has been hired to help last minute enrollees before time runs out at 5 p.m. Friday.

"There's still some time available,” she states. “We recommend that you reach out to us because we have the agents, the brokers and the enrollment counselors that are ready to help you."

In 2016, about 55,000 New Mexicans signed up for the program.

New Mexico has enrollment centers in Albuquerque, Gallup, Las Cruces and Santa Fe, and there are certified agents and brokers in other communities across the state that can help with the enrollment process.

Information is online at bewellnm.com or by calling 1-833-862-3935.

The Trump administration has worked to undercut former President Barack Obama's national health care law by decreasing advertising and proposing to eliminate the mandate that requires Americans to have health insurance.

Despite that, Reyes says right now the law says New Mexico residents who don't have health insurance in 2018 will be fined $700 for adults and $350 for each child.

"And more than focusing on how much is my fine, focus on what are the benefits,” she urges. “You know you can be utilizing that money to be covered, and then now you can be getting your annual checkups and making sure that you are healthy and you are staying on top of your health."

Reyes reminds state residents that about 70 percent are eligible for health insurance subsidies to help them pay their premiums, based on income and family size.


Roz Brown, Public News Service - NM